News from 2017-10-08 / KfW Research
Branch closures: German banks are shifting up a gear amid Herculean challenge of digitisation
German banks have recently stepped up the rate of branch closures. The have closed around one fourth of all branches since the turn of the millennium: 10,200 locations across the country, 680 branches per year. That puts Germany's branch density in mid-range compared with the rest of Europe. The trend towards consolidation will likely continue. Importantly, digitisation has firmed its grip on the banking industry. Innovative technologies, new competitors and new customer demands generate pressures to make adjustments. Banks are responding to this. If the rate of closures continues, a good half of the branches that existed at the turn of the millennium will be closed by the year 2035.