Committed to our customers for 2 centuries

Although BNP Paribas’ roots span 200 years of history, the Group’s current structure took shape in 2000, following the stock market battle that saw BNP, France’s number one bank, merge with international investment bank Paribas. The Group has built itself up gradually on this foundation, having multiple times consolidated banking institutions with strong roots in European economic history. Discover two centuries of banking focused on serving the global economy, interspersed with developments, crises, rebirths, innovations and productive mergers.

Once upon a time, there was BNP Paribas…a group with deep and multiple roots

When was the BNP Paribas Group born? In 1822, 1848, 1966 or 2000? This question merits some background information… BNP Paribas Group, one of the youngest European banks, was created on 23 May 2000 from the merger of international investment bank Paribas and leading French deposit bank BNP. BNP, from which the Group was formed, was created in 1966 from the merger of Comptoir National d’Escompte de Paris (CNEP) and Banque Nationale pour le Commerce et l’Industrie (BNCI), two banks whose origins lie in the 1848 Revolution. Finally, the Group’s oldest company is BNP Paribas Fortis, its Belgian subsidiary, which dates back to 1822.

BNP Paribas Family Tree, 2016

The history of BNP Paribas, rich in diverse traditions, highlights both its raison d’être of funding the economy and its early forays on the international stage. BNP’s forerunner, Comptoir National d’Escompte de Paris, has deployed a network abroad to support its clients’ commercial activities since the 19th century.

Looking at the history of BNP Paribas Group, we can identify a number of characteristics and values that have been forged, transmitted and acquired, sometimes in challenging circumstances, over time and as the Group has expanded:

• a long international and multicultural tradition;
• a consistent policy of working closely with industry and businesses in a bid to meet their needs, and maintaining strong local services for individual clients;
• extensive expertise and rigorous risk analysis;
• a culture of innovation, creativity and commercial vitality;
• an ability to integrate different cultures and histories.

A selection of images to discover the BNP Paribas adventure

Jean Jadot (1862-1932) – Governor of Société Générale de Belgique, the forerunner of BNP Paribas Fortis – BNP Paribas Fortis Historical Archives

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Railway line linking Beijing to Hankeou in China, financed at the turn of the 20th century by three banks that were the ancestors of BNP Paribas: Société Générale de Belgique, Banque de Paris et des Pays-Bas and Comptoir National d’Escompte de Paris – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Automatic cheque sorter at the BNP, circa 1950 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Crowd in front of the Paribas branch on Avenue de l’Opéra in Paris, at the opening of the subscription for Société Genarep shares, 5 August 1957 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Cetelem at the Salon des arts ménagers, 1956 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Banque Nationale pour le Commerce et l’Industrie (BNCI) branch in Abidjan (Ivory Coast) in 1962 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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BNL in New York in 1963 – BNL Historical Archives

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BNP’s computer centre, 1966 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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BGL BNP Paribas headquarters in 1969 – BGL BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Pierre Ledoux, président de la BNP, inaugure sa succursale à Chicago en 1974 - Archives historiques BNP Paribas

Pierre Ledoux, Chairman of BNP, inaugurates its Chicago branch in 1974 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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BNP’s administrative centre in Nancy, 1989 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Agence de la BNP à Macao en 1991 - Archives historiques BNP Paribas

BNP branch in Macao in 1991 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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In 1993, on the premises of the American subsidiary Bank of the West, acquired by BNP in 1979 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives.

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Paribas celebrates the changeover to the euro in its building at 37, place du Marché Saint-Honoré, 1999 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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The BNP Paribas taking flight symbol unveiled at the Roland Garros international tournament, 2000 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Génération Cetelem” communication campaign dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the subsidiary specialising in consumer credit, 2013 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives

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Deployment of the brand on the pediment of the BGZ BNP Paribas headquarters, 10/16 Kasprzaka Street in Warsaw, 2015 – BNP Paribas Historical Archives.

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Nickel, the first French neo-bank, joined the BNP Paribas group in 2017 and offers the possibility of opening a current account in 5 minutes at a tobacconist’s, with no income requirements and no overdraft or credit facilities.

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The story continues, discover it…