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Glitnir opens New York office


Nordic financial group Glitnir last week opened a New York office for its US subsidiary, Glitnir Capital Corporation. The new branch will provide a backbone to Glitnir´s North American operations, particularly as the bank expands into the geothermal energy sector in the US.
Glitnir, which classes Iceland and Norway as its two home markets, focuses on geothermal energy as one of three global niche sectors (seafood / food and offshore supply vessels are the other two). Glitnir is also a leading Nordic player in capital market services in Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Russia.
At the opening of the new office, Glitnir hosted its first ever conference on geothermal energy, entitled “Steam of Opportunities”, followed later by a gala dinner. Keynote speeches were delivered by the Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, the President of Iceland, Arni Magnusson, Managing Director of sustainable energy for Glitnir and Thorsteinn M. Jonsson, the Chairman of Glitnir.
Arni Magnusson confirmed Glitnir‘s niche strategy for the US; “We’ve decided to narrow our focus down to geothermal and the US market is on top of the list.“ He went on to say that, ”in the next five years [investment in geothermal energy] is estimated at $10 billion in the US and, if we can get 10% of that, that would be good"
Magnusson said Glitnir had already financed three geothermal energy projects in the US in 2007 and was planning one or two more before 2008, adding up to a total investment of between $70 million and $100 million. Glitnir said in a press release that the investments required to service current geothermal projects in the US came to nearly $10 billion, while the total investments required to develop geothermal resources until 2025 were estimated at nearly $40 billion.
Thorsteinn M. Jonsson, who became Glitnir Chairman earlier this year, discussed the economic reasons behind the highly-publicised expansion of Icelandic banks into overseas markets and drew parallels with the Viking landings in America a thousand years ago and Glitnir Capital Corporation´s current plans to establish a permanent office in the US.
Jonsson assured attendees that Glitnir was in the US, “to do business, look for opportunities and work with local business people to create value for their and our shareholders”. He said that Glitnir’s goal was to “achieve in the geothermal energy sector what we have already done in seafood and offshore supply” - namely to become the leading US and global bank in the geothermal energy market - Glitnir’s third global niche.
For more information on Glitnir and its expertise in geothermal energy, visit the financial group’s website at:


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