RBC plans for growth as hits City century

ROYAL BANK OF CANADA (RBC) is looking to expand its wealth management and investment banking arms as it celebrates its 100th anniversary in the City of London.

RBC, Canada’s largest company by revenue, is hiring bankers to push its private client business in the Middle East and Eastern Europe. It also plans to bolster its investment bank by bringing in more staff for equity capital markets, fixed income and currency trading in Europe and Asia.

Pauline Egan, London head of RBC Wealth Management, said: “Four years ago our wealth management business employed 70 people and today we have almost 180. What we think stands out is the strength and stability of our name. We are a secure bank and we have come through the financial crisis in good shape.”

Egan’s comments came as senior RBC figures raised a glass to a century in the Square Mile. The institution, founded in Nova Scotia in 1864, opened its first UK office on Princes Street in September 1910 with four employees. The group now has around 1,400 staff in the City in total.

RBC, which manages C$240bn (£146.9bn) of client assets globally, has hired 1,100 people around the world in the past 12 months.

Despite a tightening regulatory environment and the impending annual levy on banks’ balance sheets, chief executive John Burbidge used the opportunity to affirm the organisation’s enthusiasm for the UK. He said: “RBC remains committed to London and to growing our franchise across Europe and Asia, where we see significant opportunities.”

FAST FACTS | royal bank of Canada

The lender began as the?Merchants Bank, financing the fishing and timber industries of Halifax, Nova Scotia, in the 1860s.

Between 1995 and 2001, then-boss John Cleghorn turned RBC into a multi-services bank.