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Germany

July 16, 2010

Tax raids by governments on private banks, such as the one on Wednesday by German investigators on Credit Suisse offices, are a short term move by governments to raise cash but do not address the underlying problems, according to one family office executive.

Tax raids by governments on private banks, such as the one on Wednesday by German investigators on Credit Suisse offices, are a short term move by governments to raise cash but do not address the underlying problems, according to one family office executive.
 

July 12, 2010

Banco Santander, the family-controlled banking group, announced today that it will acquire the German retail banking business of Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken (SEB Group) for €555 million.

Banco Santander, the family-controlled banking group, announced today that it will acquire the German retail banking business of Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken (SEB Group) for €555 million.
 
The acquisition adds 173 branches and around a million customers in Germany for Spain-based Santander. Family chairman Emilio Botin (pictured) said: "Germany is a core market for Santander. This acquisition is a significant step towards achieving our goal of being a full-service retail bank in Europe's largest market."

January 27, 2010

Germany has found a new way to celebrate its “Mittelstand” – its tradition of largely family-owned, not-so-small companies – and take a swipe at “casino capitalism” at the same time, writes Darrell Delamaide

Germany has found a new way to celebrate its "Mittelstand" – its tradition of largely family-owned, not-so-small companies – and take a swipe at "casino capitalism" at the same time.

Handelsblatt, the flagship newspaper of the family-owned Holtzbrinck publishing group, last week celebrated its second annual induction into the family business Hall of Fame, naming banker Friedrich von Metzler and industrialist Heinrich Weiss to a virtual pantheon of German family entrepreneurs.

September 1, 2008

The story of the summer has been family-owned Schaeffler’s takeover bid of Continental. Neil Sen has a look at what happened and what it means for the company

The story of the summer has been family-owned Schaeffler's takeover bid of Continental. Neil Sen has a look at what happened and what it means for the company

"You can't get along in this world by being nice to everyone," Maria-Elisabeth Schaeffler, the head of the private, family-owned German engineering group Schaeffler, said in 2001 after her company's successful hostile bid for the much larger, listed company FAG Kugelfischer.

July 16, 2008

Car part manufacturer Continental has rejected family firm Schaeffler’s unexpected €12.2 billion bid, saying the offer is too low and the tyres-to-brakes company would gain nothing from a merger.

Car part manufacturer Continental has rejected family firm Schaeffler's unexpected €11.2 billion bid, saying the offer is too low and the tyres-to-brakes company would gain nothing from a merger.

Weekend reports of a potential offer were confirmed on Tuesday when Schaeffler revealed it had clandestinely stockpiled more than a third of Continental's shares via options organised quietly through banks.

April 29, 2008

Haniel – the family-owned diversified German group – has announced a new strategy that is to focus on trading and services.

Haniel – the family-owned diversified German group – has announced a new strategy that is to focus on trading and services. The group is currently active across a wide range of industries from Europe's leading drugs wholesaler to the recycling of raw materials for the steel industry. However, the group's production sector looks set to be jettisoned.

March 1, 2008

In February, the world watched as one of the biggest offshore financial centres was investigated for fraud. Simon Hildrey analyses how this investigation came to happen and what the future holds for wealthy families who want to keep their assets secret and safe

In February, the world watched as one of the biggest offshore financial centres was investigated for fraud. Simon Hildrey analyses how this investigation came to happen and what the future holds for wealthy families who want to keep their assets secret and safe

February 22, 2008

Wealthy families and other ultra high net worth individuals who have invested money into Liechtenstein’s LGT bank may find their assets closely scrutinised as the bank is investigated for fraud by the German government.

Wealthy families and other ultra high net worth individuals who have invested money into Liechtenstein's LGT bank may find their assets closely scrutinised as the bank is investigated for fraud by the German government.

January 25, 2008

The Otto family has regained all the shares of its mail-order company, the Otto Group.

The Otto family has regained all the shares of its mail-order company, the Otto Group. The family’s investment vehicle has taken over newspaper publisher E Brost & J Funke from the other shareholders, and therefore the remaining 25% in Otto.

Thomas Voigt, spokesperson of Dr Michael Otto (pictured), who is chairman of the supervisory board, said: “Running the Otto Group as a family business enables us to follow a long term strategy to the advantage of the group, without the need to constantly deliver short term results as is the case with quoted companies.”

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