ING reports business uplift from 'Think Forward' digital strategy

Source: ING

ING records strong commercial growth and continued progress on Think Forward strategic priorities

ING gained approximately 650,000 new retail customers and established roughly 350,000 primary relationships in 1H16
Core lending grew by EUR 14.8 billion in 2Q16 as ING continues to provide financing to clients across geographies and sectors

ING Bank 2Q16 underlying net result EUR 1,417 million, up 26.7% year-on-year and 68.3% higher versus 1Q16
Strong results driven by continued lending growth at healthy margins and improved performance in Financial Markets
Results include a gain on the sale of Visa shares, as well as certain one-off expense items that offset each other in the quarter

Robust ING Group fully-loaded CET1 ratio of 13.1%; ING declares 2016 interim dividend of EUR 0.24 per ordinary share
ING Group's fully-loaded CET1 ratio rose to 13.1%, excluding the EUR 2,552 million net profit from the first half of 2016

CEO statement
"ING's Think Forward strategy and customer-first approach continue to generate strong commercial growth and quarterly net profits," said Ralph Hamers, CEO of ING Group. "During the first six months of 2016, we gained approximately 650,000 new retail customers and around 350,000 customers chose ING as their primary bank. I'm confident that our ability to deliver an outstanding banking experience will allow us to retain and empower our growing customer base in the years ahead."

"Throughout the business cycle, we strive to support our clients' financing needs and to drive sustainable progress through our business activities. Our core lending book grew by EUR 14.8 billion during the second quarter of 2016, with growth well diversified across geographies and industry sectors. Our financing of sustainable projects and clients that are environmental outperformers rose to EUR 27.8 billion, including deals in renewable energy and sustainable buildings in the second quarter."

"During the second quarter of 2016, our focus in digital banking and innovation concentrated on providing customers with easy-to-use money-management tools. We added a forecasting feature to our mobile banking app in the Netherlands, called 'Kijk Vooruit' (or 'Look Ahead'), which enables users to gain more control over their finances through an overview of planned and predicted transactions. ING in Spain launched a digital financial advisor called 'My Money Coach' that helps customers to actively manage their current and future personal finances. This initiative leveraged the technology of 'Coach Epargne' (or 'Savings Coach'), which debuted in France last quarter, accelerating the expansion of this successful innovation."

"Building on our proven track record for collaboration, ING recently joined forces with another leading Belgian bank to launch an integrated mobile payments and loyalty platform. This solution merges the loyalty platforms of both banks, with ING's Payconiq app chosen as the underlying mobile payments system. The result is a single, streamlined platform that enhances the user experience for over one million consumers and 6,500 retailers who use the existing services."

"All of our business segments performed well, contributing to ING Bank's strong quarterly underlying result before tax of EUR 2,009 million. Loan growth continued at resilient margins, supporting a solid net interest result, despite the low interest rate environment. The pre-tax result also reflects a much improved quarter in our Financial Markets business, as well as a onetime gain on the sale of Visa shares. Operating expenses were under control, consistent with our ongoing cost-containment programmes, and risk costs were low at 39 basis points of average risk-weighted assets. ING Bank's year-to-date underlying return on IFRS-EU equity was 10.8% in line with our Ambition 2017 target range."

"ING Group's fully-loaded CET1 ratio rose to 13.1%, excluding the EUR 2,552 million net profit from the first half of 2016. The results of last week's EBA stress test reaffirm the resilience of our business model and the strength of ING's capital base. We are committed to maintaining a robust fully-loaded Group CET1 ratio in excess of prevailing requirements. Today, we declare an interim cash dividend of EUR 0.24 per ordinary share, which is equal to the interim dividend paid over the first half of 2015."

"We made excellent progress on our Think Forward priorities during the first six months of 2016, which is reflected in positive customer feedback and our successful acquisition of new customers. Looking forward to the remainder of this year, we will continue to accelerate the execution of our strategy, while remaining vigilant for political and regulatory uncertainties."

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