Chase Manhattan Corp.'s revenues in Europe rose 26% in the first months of this year, from the level in the period last year, and should again rise strongly in 1994, chairman Thomas G. Labrecque said Wednesday.
"We're through the fix-it stage [in Europe] and into an era of growth," Mr. Laubrecque said. "Profits are growing and will grow again."
He declined to disclose exact income figures because of Securities and Exchange Commission restraints, but suggested that Chase would record net earnings in Europe this year for the first time since 1988, when it earned $22 million.
Revenue for Chase's European operations, which include the Middle East and Africa, could reach $1.27 billion, judging by the 26% gain already posted.
The sharp improvement in revenues in Europe follows several years of restructuring at Chase.
The bank divided operations into national consumer business in the United States, regional banking in the New York metropolitan area, and global wholesale financial activities.
The wholesale activities in Europe have been retrenched. Since 1989. Chase has sold off or closed most of its local commercial and retail banking operations in Europe and built up wholesale corporate banking, trading activities and global custpdy services on behalf of large corporate customers and government agencies.
The reorginization reduced the contribution of international revenues to the bank's overall revenues.
Executives with the bank estimated that around 45% of Chase's revenues last year came from international operations, compared with around 75% in the early 1980s. Europe alone, Mr. Labrecque estimated, will provide around 20% of Chase's total revenues gthis year.
Chase officials said the rise in revenue from European operations included a 33% improvement in revenues from corporate finance and a 95% increase in revenues and a 95% increase in revenues from derivatives.
Forex Tradinga Strong
Growth in foreign exchange trading has also been strong, and is up around 36% over the first nine months.
The bank trades arpound $20 billion in foreign exchange daily in London, and foreign exchange provides 20% to 25% of total revenues from Europe.
The global wholesale operations are run as a single entity focusing on cross-border transactions. This, officials said, could mean assisting an Asian investor who wants to invest in Latin America, a Latin American corporation that wants to raise funds in Europe, or a European corporation that wants to invest in Asia.
"We don't look at Europe as a separate place anymore," Mr. Labrecque said.
Areas Being Stressed
Chase's international activities now revolve mainly around corporate finance and capital markets, risk management, and global custody, and acting as intermediary between issuers and investors.
Private banking, the only retail banking activity Chase retained in Europe, is also being expanded.
The bank has around $60 billion in private banking assets under management worldwide, around half of which are in Europe.
"We have a network that is well placed to international capital flows," Mr. Labrecque said.
After selling off many of its local branch networks in different European countries, Chase now operates 20 offices from Ireland to Kazakhstan.
Clearing Done in England
Meanwhile, European clearing operations, such as foreign exchange settlement, have been centralized in Bournemouth, England, where Chase has invested $100 million in a European administrative center.
The most immediate expansion, Mr. Labrecque said, will likely be in Poland, Russia, and Kazakhstan, where Chase will open new offices.
Mr. Labrecque indicated that although business is still limited in those countries, the bank is building up business with wealthy individuals and with corporate and government institutions.
Among the business sectors Chase is focusing on developing in Eastern are cross border payments, project finance, and trade finance.