Now, over two years since the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion, Ukraine’s banking system still hasn’t stopped working for a day, remains resilient against numerous cyberattacks, and has become one of the few highly profitable sectors in Ukraine’s economy – contributing to it with more taxes. 

“In most of the countries that faced war, the banking system went on a bank holiday. That is, the banks stopped working,” said Kyrylo Shevchenko, the ex-head of the National Bank of Ukraine, in an interview back in April 2022. 

But this success came at a price. 

Ten years before the invasion, Ukraine’s banking sector supported state and corporate corruption. The National Bank ignored white-collar crimes and did not create policies that could keep Ukraine’s economy resilient. 

Advertisement

Everything changed after a new team under Valeriia Hontareva came in charge and changed the rules forever, creating the foundation for the banking sector Ukraine has now. 

Quantity – and Quality – of Ukraine’s banks

As of April 2024, Ukraine’s banking system has 63 banks. 

Six are state-owned: PrivatBank, Oschadbank, Ukreximbank, Ukrgasbank, Sence Bank, and First Investment Bank. Sence Bank (formerly Alfa Bank) was nationalized because of Russian shareholders under sanctions. First Investment Bank (a.k.a. PIN Bank) was also nationalized. 

Ukrainian Company Is Building Europe’s Largest Hemp Factory
Other Topics of Interest

Ukrainian Company Is Building Europe’s Largest Hemp Factory

Over a century ago hemp was the main material used in fabrics and parachute manufacturing before cotton took the lead. Andrii Mykytiv’s Ma’rijany Hemp Company wants to go back to roots.

The banking sector also includes 15 banks of foreign banking groups. These include divisions of major global banking groups: 

  • Raiffeisen Bank (Austria), 
  • OTP Bank (Hungary), 
  • Crédit Agricole (France), 
  • ING Bank (Netherlands), 
  • Citibank (The US), 
  • Idea Bank (Poland), 
  • SEB Corporate Bank (Sweden), 
  • Piraeus Bank (Greece), 
  • Proсredit, Deutsche Bank (both from Germany), 
  • CreditWest Bank, Credit Europe Bank (Turkey), 
  • Kredobank (owned by PKO Bank Polski), 
  • Ukrsibbank (owned by BNP Paribas), 
  • Pravex Bank (owned by italian Intesa Sanpaolo). 

The third part of the sector consists of the banks, owned privately by Ukrainian owners. They vary in size, popularity, business focus and business model. 

How Banks in Ukraine Earn

In 2023, Ukraine’s banking sector earned almost Hr.160 billion ($4 billion) in pre-tax profit — almost twice as much as before the start of the full-scale invasion. 

Only seven banks were unprofitable in the sector. 

Advertisement

PrivatBank tends to form the biggest share, if not the majority, of its profits, no matter how diverse the sector is. In 2023, the bank’s profits formed 43.6 percent of the sector, according to Opendatabot estimates

The reason for this success lies in its size and business model. It is a retail-funded commercial bank that also provides loans to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). PrivatBank states on its website that it serves 19 million active customers, both private individuals and legal entities. 

Other top-10 most profitable banks in Ukraine include:

  • Ukreximbank, 
  • Sense Bank, 
  • Raiffeisen Bank, 
  • Oschadbank, 
  • Ukrsibbank, 
  • First Ukrainian International Bank (or PUMB in Ukrainian, owned by Ukraine’s richest man Rinat Akhmetov’s SKM Holding), 
  • OTP Bank, 
  • Citibank, 
  • Crédit Agricole, 
  • Ukrgasbank, 
  • Universal Bank (owned by Serhii Tihipko and also operates Ukraine’s most famous online neobank Monobank), 
  • Kredobank, 
  • ING Bank, 
  • Pivdenny Bank (privately-owned corporate-oriented bank), 
  • ProCredit, 
  • A-Bank (retail-oriented bank owned by Sukris brothers), 
  • Idea Bank, 
  • Vostok Bank 
  • and SEB Bank. 

Ten banks formed 98.12 percent of Ukraine’s banking system profits.

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter