Published: 7th Feb 2013

Britain led the world in developing mutual financial institutions and public savings banks, but now its local banking sector pales in comparison to that of the US and Germany. Tony Greenham asks what the UK learn from other countries in rebuilding its stakeholder banks? In September 2011, I invited Niclaus Bergmann to speak at a UK conference on local banking. He is the director of the German Savings Banks Foundation for International Co-operation, and I wanted our delegates to get the chance to hear first-hand about the 430 local banks, known as Sparkassen, that make up the backbone of the German banking system. He was reluctant at first. With a hint of embarrassment, he modestly explained that his foundation’s mission was to give advice and support to less developed nations who were trying to improve their banking industries, and he didn’t want to suggest that the UK was in this … (To read the full article, subscribe below)