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Helmut Schleweis appointed ESBG President

Helmut Schleweis appointed ESBG President

​​​​​​Three-year term comes as European savings & retail banks navigate digital world, complex EU rules 

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>> ESBG members

BRUSSELS, 28 June 2018 – The European Savings and Retail Banking Group (ESBG) Board of Directors has appointed today German Savings Banks Association President Helmut Schleweis as the association's President for a three-year term starting immediately. 

Commenting on his appointment, Mr. Schleweis said: "During my mandate, we will continue to share with policymakers the need for more proportionate and better regulation, more adapted to decentralised institutions such as savings and retail banks that are the engines for financing the real economy. We welcome the progress being made by EU legislators, but further action is needed. On the economy, frameworks to boost growth should keep in mind ESBG members' efforts to grow their €500 billion SME loan book."

The new President's Committee led by Mr Schleweis will build upon the invaluable work done by outgoing ESBG President Isidro Fainé. The newly appointed leadership take the helm at a time when ESBG fosters idea exchange among members and policy advocacy efforts to help savings and retail banks thrive in a digitally driven world.


  • Helmut Schleweis, ESBG President; President, German Savings Banks Association (Germany)


  • Isidro Fainé, ESBG Vice President; President, Ceca (Spain)

  • Laurent Mignon, ESBG Vice President; Chairman of the Management Board, Groupe BPCE (France)

  • Birgitte Bonnesen, ESBG Vice President; President & CEO, Swedbank (Sweden)

  • Gerhard Fabisch, ESBG Vice President; President, Austrian Savings Banks Association (Austria)

  • Giuseppe Ghisolfi, ESBG Vice President and Treasurer; President, ACRI (Italy)


WSBI-ESBG Managing Director Chris De Noose said: "Helmut Schleweis brings a wealth of insight from 45 years working within the German savings banks. He has demonstrated throughout his career a sincere commitment to locally focused, innovation-led retail banking. I will be happy to cooperate very closely with President Schleweis to develop further ESBG as the European voice of savings and retail banks."


For more information, please contact:

James Pieper on +32 2 211 11 92 or at

Dirk Smet on +32 2 211 11 90 or at


Notes to editors:

Helmut Schleweis biography

Helmut Schleweis is president of WSBI-ESBG member German Savings Banks Association (DSGV). In that role, Schleweis heads the umbrella organisation of the Savings Banks Finance Group (Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe in German), Germany's largest and leading financial network. The Group includes 390 savings banks (Sparkasse in German), seven Landesbank groups, eight Landesbausparkassen, 11 direct insurer groups, as well as many additional financial service providers and other associated companies, with a total of over 320,000 employees.

Before leading DSGV on 1 January 2018 for a six-year term, the 63-year-old Schleweis was since 2010 Federal Chairman of the German Savings Banks (Deutscher Sparkassen in German) and 3rd Vice-President of the DSGV. In this capacity, he represented the interests of savings banks in many institutions of the Savings Banks Finance Group, in particular in the group's associated companies. In 2002, he was appointed Chairman of their management board. Schleweis, who was born in Heidelberg, began his professional career in 1973 at the Sparkasse in Heidelberg.

In addition to his role leading Berlin-headquartered DSGV, he is:

  • Chairman, Supervisory Board, DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale

  • Executive board member, Bundesverband Öffentlicher Banken Deutschlands e.V.

  • Chairman, Board of Governors and Advisory Board, University of Applied Sciences Bonn GmbH

  • Chairman, Advisory Board and Board of Trustees, Schloss Neuhardenberg Foundation 

  • Member, Supervisory Board, KfW Banking Group

  • Member, Supervisory Board, Deutsche Sparkassen Leasing AG & Co. KG.

  • Member, Supervisory Board, Deutsche Sparkassen Leasing Verwaltungs-AG 

  • Member, Supervisory Board, Deutsche Leasing AG 

  • Chairman, Supervisory Board, Berliner Sparkasse / Landesbank Berlin AG (member since June 2010)

  • Chairman, Supervisory Board, Landesbank Berlin Holding AG (member since June 2010)

  • Chairman, Supervisory Board, Berlin Hyp AG (member since November 2013)

Schleweis is married and has two adult children.


About ESBG

ESBG represents the locally focused European banking sector, helping savings and retail banks in 19 European countries strengthen their unique approach that focuses on providing service to local communities and boosting SMEs. An advocate for a proportionate approach to banking rules, ESBG unites at EU level some 1,000 banks, which together employ 780,000 people driven to innovate at 56,000 outlets. ESBG members have total assets of €6.2 trillion, provide €500 billion in SME loans, and serve 150 million Europeans seeking retail banking services. ESBG's 19 members are committed to further unleash the promise of sustainable, responsible 21st century banking. Learn more at



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Proportionality; SME finance; European Institutions; European Supervisory Authorities (EBA-ESMA)