The war and the German Occupation interrupted its advance, but the bank moved into Africa and the United States. By , the bank had 15 branches in Paris and 32 in the rest of France. They may also be known as international business companies , personal investment companies , front companies , or " mailbox " companies.
It moved into Italy and Mexico and altered the status of its establishments in Africa after decolonisation, in accordance with the laws passed by these newly independent countries. Société Générale gave new impetus to its French network, with an acceleration in growth after following elimination of prior authorisation for opening branch offices. International expansion was just as vigorous. It was no longer limited, as before, to the main financial centres London, New York , neighbouring countries Belgium , Spain and the former colonies, with the primary aim of facilitating the business of French firms, but was also aimed at guaranteeing the bank's presence where new markets were developing, either to export the technical expertise it had acquired in certain fields, or to keep up its contact with the multi-nationals.
Société Générale took advantage of this and acquired leading positions in some new financing techniques designed primarily for companies, such as finance leasing , setting up specialised credit subsidiaries for this purpose.
The s were characterised by two major developments: In , the appearance of automatic cash machines crowned the success and development of the credit card. In , Société Générale opened its representative office in the Soviet Union. In , Société Générale introduced Agrifan, a food-products trading company to connect French suppliers with foreign food buyers. The following year during the Bastille Day holiday, a meticulously planned robbery was carried out against Société Générale's most heavily fortified vault in France by ex-paratrooper and wedding photographer Albert Spaggiari.
The robbery which involved secretly tunneling underground and compromising the walls of the bank vault netted Spaggiari over 12 million in cash, jewellery, and bullion.
From the beginning of the s, against a backdrop of deregulation and technological change, internationalisation of the markets and the emergence of new financial instruments, Société Générale set itself two commercial objectives. It focused increasingly on private customers via its network of branches and by acquiring specialised subsidiaries.
It pursued and expanded its activities in the capital markets in France, and then, on a selective basis, in the different international financial centres. On July 29, , Société Générale was privatised. It had been chosen from among the three leading French commercial banks nationalised in for its excellent risk-coverage, equity and productivity ratios.
George Soros was a share-holder in In subsequent years, the Société Générale Group has focused on developing its activities around three core businesses through a combination of organic growth and acquisitions. Retail Banking was strengthened in through the acquisition of Crédit du Nord , highlighting the Group's determination to capitalise on the restructuring of the French banking system.
At the same time, Société Générale looked to secure the long-term loyalty of its customers launch of "one account number for life" and introduction of Jazz, a package of service offers. In it entered into a merger agreement with rival bank Paribas , but this was scuppered by a competitor, the Banque Nationale de Paris BNP.
Cohen , Cowen's chief executive became its chairman, and Curtis R. Welling, an investment banker from Societe Generale's New York office became president and chief executive. In , Société Générale set up Retail Banking outside France as a separate division, underscoring the Group's resolve to make this business one of its strategic development axes.
Investment banking at Societe Generale in Russia was run by Jacques Der Megreditchian until  At that time, Société Générale became officially concerned with money laundering scandal and underground economy. In terms of specialized financial services, a department created in mid , the purchase of two Deutsche Bank subsidiaries, ALD Automotive for multi-brand auto leasing and financing and GEFA for corporate sales financing enabled Société Générale to increase its European presence in these sectors.
In , it continued to pursue its external growth strategy by purchasing Hertz Lease, a European subsidiary specializing in long-term leasing and fleet management for Ford Motor Company vehicles.
With a track record as leader in France for financial savings products mutual funds, investment funds, company savings plans , the Group has developed its Asset Management and Private Banking activities: With the launch of Société Générale AM UK in London and the acquisition of Yamaichi in Japan , Société Générale Asset Management has taken a decisive step in establishing its international presence and is now able to offer its customers truly global fund management capabilities.
Société Générale also has a worldwide presence in private banking activities. After pursuing a deliberate policy of acquisitions in , Société Générale Private Banking consolidated and developed its franchise in against a backdrop of tougher competition.
GIMS employed 7, people. French reporter Denis Robert and former 3 of Cedel fr: Ernest Backes ,a whistleblower of Clearstream have accused Société Générale of having non-published accounts in Clearstream, which was at the centre of a financial scandal in The bank denied those accusations. Partly due to the loss, that same day two credit rating agencies reduced the bank's long term debt ratings: Executives said the trader acted alone and that he may not have benefited directly from the fraudulent deals.
The bank announced it will be immediately seeking 5. On the eve and afternoon of January 25, , Police raided the Paris headquarters of Société Générale and Kerviel's apartment in the western suburb of Neuilly , to seize his computer files.
Three union officials of Société Générale employees said Kerviel had family problems. He will be questioned at the appropriate time, as soon as the police have analysed documents provided by Société Générale. Following two years of crisis resulting from the revelation of the Kerviel fraud and then from the eruption of the global financial crisis , the bank appeared to have put things behind it in Société Générale filed the civil suit.
The trial aroused much media interest, with a record number of requests for accreditation from journalists. The ruling was announced on October 5, , at 11 am.
Jérôme Kerviel was found guilty of the three charges filed against him: He was found to be solely responsible for the record loss suffered by Société Générale in early , and was sentenced to five years in prison, with two of those years suspended, and ordered to pay damages of 4.
Jérôme Kerviel immediately launched an appeal on the basis of an "unreasonable decision", according to his lawyer Olivier Metzner. The sentencing of one man to pay such a large sum of money was met with incomprehension and anger amongst Internet users. The Bank announced that the sum was "symbolic" and it had no expectation that the sum would be paid by Jérôme Kerviel.
An ongoing transformation plan In business terms, Société Générale appeared intent on moving on and implementing an in-depth transformation in On June 15, the Bank presented its Ambition SG programme to investors, the aim of this programme being to "deliver growth with lower risk" by , using the lessons learned from the crisis.
Positive financial results In , the company saw an upturn in its financial results. Tout savoir sur les paradis fiscaux, les sociétés offshore, l'exil fiscal et l'enfer fiscal. Une société offshore peut avoir différents objectifs: Nous avons fait une sélection de prestataires en nous basant sur leur réputation, leur transparence sur les prix, leur compétitivité, la facilité de création de société offshore et la qualité de leur services.
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