Landsbankinn has accepted the offer of Akureyri-based investment company Kaldbakur for its building, commonly known as Landsbankahúsið, at Ráðhústorgið in Akureyri. Seven offers were received and Kaldbakur made the highest bid. The purchase price is ISK 685 million. Landsbankinn will operate out of the building until it relocates.
The Landsbankinn building is around 2300 m2 and one of the landmarks of the square. Guðjón Samúelsson created the initial proposal drawings for the building, with Bárður Ísleifsson continuing the work and making all additional drawings after the former’s death. Bárður also created drawings for a possible addition to the east side of building, that was never erected.
Eiríkur S. Jóhannsson, CEO of investment company Kaldbakur:
“The Landsbankinn building is located at the heart of Akureyri and historically played an important role. Kaldbakur wants to contribute to the preservation of the building and rejuvenate it for the future. We are well aware that the original drawings are for a larger and taller building. We will take this into consideration moving forward to ensure effective utilisation of the building in a manner that preserves its landmark status. We are convinced that Akureyri will grow and develop in the coming years as a centre of habitation, culture and activity in North Iceland and as one of the main urban areas outside of the capital city region. Purchase of Landsbankahúsið affords Kaldbakur a welcome chance to participate in the development of the centre and contribute to the importance of Akureyri. That makes this a good investment, which is the main reason for the purchase.”
Lilja Björk Einarsdóttir, CEO of Landsbankinn:
“Landsbankahúsið in Akureyri is a true landmark and it has stood us in good stead. The Akureyri branch is one of the Bank’s core centres of operation, with 39 employees currently stationed there. Most of the team works in the branch itself but there is also a large customer service centre that responds to customers from the entire country, as well as three employees of the IT division, who work remotely from Akureyri. The fact is that despite such robust activity, the building has been too large for our operation for quite some time. We are positive towards the plans of the new owners for rejuvenating the building and the possibilities certainly abound. While we will continue to operate out of the building for some time, we are already looking for new premises where we will continue to offer our customers in Akureyri and the surrounding countryside with excellent service.”