Bank of America Picks Dublin for EU Base Following Brexit

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (The Charlotte Observer/TNS) -
Bank of America Dublin
(Dreamstime/TNS)

Bank of America announced Friday that Dublin will be the new base for its European Union operations following Britain’s decision last year to split from the EU.

Brian Moynihan, CEO of the Charlotte-based bank, made the announcement during a trip to the Irish capital city. The company becomes the latest large U.S. bank in recent weeks to disclose plans for continuing to serve clients in EU countries following the so-called Brexit vote of 2016.

In a statement, Moynihan called Dublin the “natural location” for consolidating the bank’s legal entities, noting Bank of America already has an Irish-domiciled bank.

The chief executive also noted Dublin is home to more Bank of America employees than any other European city outside of the U.K. and that the bank has operated in Ireland for almost 50 years.

Big banks have been disclosing more details about where they will base hubs in order to continue accessing EU markets after the March 2019 Brexit deadline.

On Thursday, Citigroup employees were told the New York-based bank may hire 150 new staff in the EU as it bolsters Frankfurt as its newest trading hub, Bloomberg reported. JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s investment banking head in May said the New York-based bank planned to move hundreds of London-based bankers to expanded offices in Dublin, Frankfurt and Luxembourg, Bloomberg also reported. Other banks have also discussed Brexit plans.

Moynihan, who met Friday with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, said the bank will move roles not only to Dublin but also to other locations in the EU. Moynihan told the Financial Times it was too early to give specifics but said the bank would definitely have more people in Dublin than the 700 it currently has, the news outlet reported. That will be achieved through a combination of new hires and moving staff from the bank’s London office, the Financial Times reported.

Bank of America’s selection of Dublin was not a complete surprise. In March, Bloomberg reported one of the bank’s top executives said the company viewed Dublin as its default destination for a new hub inside the EU.