Jan Peter Schmittmann


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Another former top banker commits suicide
By Mark Thompson @MarkThompsonCNN April 8, 2014: 10:41 AM ET
A former senior ABN Amro banker suffering from severe depression killed his wife and daughter before taking his own life.
The bodies of Jan Peter Schmittmann and his family were found Saturday at their home in the Dutch town of Laren, about 20 miles south east of Amsterdam, police said in a statement late Monday.

Police said a forensic investigation had ruled out possible alternatives to the murder-suicide scenario.

A suicide note was found, but police declined to provide details and would not comment further on the manner of the deaths.

But they released a statement from other members of the family acknowledging Schmittmann's battle with depression.

Schmittmann was responsible for ABN Amro's Dutch business for five years before he was forced out in 2008 when the bank's new owner -- Fortis (FRTSF) -- was nationalized at the height of the global financial crisis.

Related: Banks under pressure over rising stress

He started his career with ABN Amro's investment bank, before working as branch manager in India and country manager in Singapore in the 1990s.

He became a member of the bank's strategy team in 2000 and was appointed to the managing board in 2007, shortly after the ill-fated takeover by Fortis, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Spain's Santander (SAN).

Schmittman's suicide follows several other untimely deaths of finance professionals in Switzerland, the U.K., Hong Kong and the U.S.

The deaths have put pressure on the industry to do more to help employees suffering from stress, anxiety and depression.

Some companies are responding. In London, 19 firms and two charities have joined together to create the City Mental Health Alliance, providing a forum for top executives in banking and professional services to discuss how best to tackle rising stress levels.

--CNN's Mick Krever contributed to this article.


Former executive of one of the banks blamed for creating credit crunch found dead along with his wife, 57, and daughter, 22
Jan Peter Schmittmann, wife and daughter found dead on Saturday
Their bodies were discovered by Schmittmann's elder daughter
The former top banker came under fire for taking a large pay-off
It followed the nationalisation of his troubled Dutch bank ABN Amro
ABN was taken over in 2007, but nationalised after RBS collapsed
PUBLISHED: 06:27 EST, 7 April 2014 | UPDATED: 10:22 EST, 7 April 2014

A former executive of the bank that helped trigger the Royal Bank of Scotland's collapse has been found dead along with his wife and daughter.
Jan Peter Schmittmann, 57, came under fire for taking a large pay-off after the nationalisation of his troubled bank ABN Amro.

He ran the domestic operations of the Dutch bank between 2003 and 2007 and was widely criticised for landing a £6.6million ($10.95 million) pay-off.

Jan Peter Schmittmann, 57, former Netherlands chief executive of the ABN Amro bank, who has been found dead along with his wife Nelly, 57, and daughter Babette, 22, at their home in the Dutch town of Laren

Jan Peter Schmittmann, 57, former Netherlands chief executive of the ABN Amro bank, who has been found dead along with his wife Nelly (right), 57, and daughter Babette, 22, at their home in the Dutch town of Laren
It followed the bank's collapse, takeover by RBS and subsequent nationalisation.

Police in the Netherlands said they visited his house in the wealthy commuter town of Laren, east of Amsterdam, early on Saturday after being alerted by a family friend.
There they found his body along with those of his 57-year-old wife Nelly and 22-year-old younger daughter Babette.

A police spokeswoman said an investigation was underway but that all early clues pointed to a family drama having taken place.
There was no indication that Schmittmann's business dealings had played any role in the tragedy.
The daily Algemeen Dagblad said the three were found by Schmittmann's elder daughter who had come to visit before departing for India, where she had been due to do an internship.

Family tragedy: Babette Schmittmann, 22, daughter of Jan Peter Schmittmann
The elder daughter was in the care of wider family and the police victim care unit, police spokeswoman Leonie Bosselaar said.
Schmittmann paved the way for ABN Amro's break-up and sale in 2007 to a consortium of the banks Royal Bank of Scotland, Fortis and Santander.

After they came into difficulties during the global financial crisis, the Dutch government nationalised the core Dutch operations of ABN Amro.
When he left the bank after its nationalisation in 2008, Schmittmann was contractually due a 16 million euro pay-off, a sum that was halved after then finance minister Wouter Bos described it as 'exorbitant'.

A spokesman for ABN Amro told MailOnline: 'We are all very shocked.'

For RBS - and the world economy - the deal to take over ABN Amro was a calamity.
In 2007 RBS, led by the then Sir Fred Goodwin, was on its way to becoming the world's biggest bank, with assets of £1.9 trillion.
But following the deal to buy up parts of ABN Amro, in a 73.3 billion euro ($100.5 billion) deal with Fortis and Banco Santander SA, the shaky foundations on which the the RBS financial monster was built started to emerge.

At the time the deal was the biggest banking takeover in history, but it quickly turned into a disaster.

Not only was it concluded at an inflated price after a hostile bidding process, but just as the world economy teetered on the edge of the great recession.

Then Lehman Brothers went out of business. That earthquake triggered a financial tsunami which went on to flatten RBS, which had to be rescued by taxpayers 12 months later at the cost of £45.2 billion.

Five years on a Treasury Committee report - titled 'The FSA'’s report into the failure of RBS' - concluded that the Financial Services Authority should and could have intervened in the doomed takeover.

Goodwin, the bank’s former chief executive, was stripped of his knighthood in 2012, but has never been censured by the regulator as a result of RBS's collapse.

Much of ABN Amro's operations had to be split out to reform it following the collapse and in 2012 RBS 'sold' back to the Dutch lender parts of its businesses originally acquired in 2007.

Selling the Dutch business continued RBS's rapid downsizing of its global banking and markets arm to restructure the bank and focus it more on UK retail and commercial banking.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2598708/Former-boss-bank-helped-trigger-collapse-RBS-dead.html#ixzz3LFJ0C56Y 
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Schmittmann paved the way for ABN Amro's break-up and sale in 2007 to a consortium of the banks Royal Bank of Scotland, Fortis and Santander. After they came into difficulties during the global financial crisis, the Dutch government nationalized the core Dutch operations of ABN Amro.

Jan Peter Schmittmann, 57, ran the domestic operations of Dutch bank ABN Amro between 2003 and 2007

Ex-ABN Banker Schmittmann Killed Wife, Daughter, Himself
By Maud van Gaal and Martijn van der Starre Apr 7, 2014 1:12 PM CT
Former ABN Amro Netherlands Chief Executive Officer Jan Peter Schmittmann committed suicide after killing his wife and one of his daughters, Dutch police said, as his family said he suffered from depression.

The Dutch forensic institute has “confirmed suspicions” of a murder-suicide, the police said in a statement today. Schmittmann’s family was cited as saying in the statement that “we knew Jan Peter struggled with severe depression.”

Schmittmann, 57, and his wife and daughter were found at their home in Laren, 32 kilometers (20 miles) southeast of Amsterdam, on April 5 after the police received a call from an acquaintance who said something might be wrong at the property. Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf identified the dead women as Schmittman’s 57-year-old wife, Nelly, and their daughter Babette, 22.

“A farewell letter has been found inside the house,” the police said in the statement. The authorities declined further comment on the letter’s contents and time and cause of death.

Schmittmann, who was born in Maartensdijk, Netherlands, is survived by one daughter, who wasn’t at home and was informed by officers of the death of her family, the police said on April 5.

“We are deeply shocked and devastated by this incomprehensible news,” Schmittmann’s family said in the police statement. “Our first concern now is supporting the remaining daughter in coping with this indescribable grief.”

De Telegraaf reported today that Schmittmann hanged himself, citing two people it didn’t identify.

Nationalization, Dismissal

Schmittmann joined ABN Amro Holding NV, once among Europe’s biggest banks, in 1983 as an assistant relationship manager and was named head of the lender’s Dutch unit in 2003. As a member of the bank’s executive board, he was responsible for restructuring it along the lines agreed by Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc, Fortis and Banco Santander SA in their three-way takeover of the lender in 2007.

A year after the biggest financial-services takeover in history, the credit crunch drove Fortis to the verge of collapse, forcing the Netherlands to take over its Dutch banking and insurance units, including assets of the former ABN Amro in 2008. The Dutch asked Gerrit Zalm to lead the company now called ABN Amro Group NV.

On the eve of the nationalization, Schmittmann was dismissed by the Dutch Finance Ministry, he told lawmakers in a 2011 hearing. He received an 8 million-euro ($11 million) severance payment, less than what he was entitled to under his contract and more than the Dutch government sought to pay.

London Deaths

Schmittmann owned 2phase2, a management company for investments and financial transactions, according to information on LinkedIn Corp.’s professional social-networking website. He’s also co-founder of 5 Park Lane BV, and last year returned to banking as a supervisory board member at Delta Lloyd Bank NV.

Recent deaths by finance workers around the world have raised concerns of mental health and stress levels in the industry.

A coroner in London last month started an inquest into the apparent suicide of William Broeksmit, 58, a retired Deutsche Bank AG risk executive found dead in his London home in January. The inquest for Gabriel Magee, a 39-year-old vice president in technology operations at JPMorgan Chase & Co., who died after falling from the firm’s 33-story London headquarters, is scheduled for late May.

In 2009, former ABN Amro Holding NV Chief Financial Officer Huibert Boumeester, 49, took his life while suffering from depression, according to the coroner investigating his death. The banker was found dead from gunshot wounds by police that June in woodlands 25 miles west of his London home.

To contact the reporters on this story: Maud van Gaal in Amsterdam at mvangaal@bloomberg.net; Martijn van der Starre in Amsterdam at vanderstarre@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Frank Connelly at fconnelly@bloomberg.net; Mariajose Vera at mvera1@bloomberg.net Keith Campbell, Steven Crabill