2 Place de l’Opéra (Paris): from a CNEP major branch to a BNP Paribas Concept Store

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In 1892 the Comptoir National d’Escompte de Paris (CNEP) established its major Paris branch on Place de l’Opéra, in a building which used to to be the Head office of the Société de Dépôts et de Comptes Courants, which felt bankruptcy in 1892. The building had been built in 1868 by the architect Henri Blondel (1821-1897) and is considered as the first French modern head office of a deposit bank.

This postcard offers of view of the branch ideally located across from the Opéra Garnier, at the corner of Avenue de l’Opéra and Rue du 4 Septembre. The black sign indicates in gold letters that it is the CNEP and also mentions the word “major branch.”

A branch with a special status: the major branch

The major branch differs from the branch by its floor area and by the kind of services offered customers. It is run with some autonomy, can accommodate a large staff and, like the head office, it manages current accounts, portfolios, deposits, discounts and insurance. It also offers safety deposit box rental services, which differentiate the branch from the local branch.

Last, a part of the clientele are foreign clients. This is a characteristic that still applies today to BNP Paribas first Concept Store, inaugurated in 2010 in the former setting of the CNEP agency.

The Group’s innovation laboratory, 2 Opéra is a unique agency model that offers a new approach to banking relations and tests the use of news technologies.

BNP Paribas Historical Archives
BNP Paribas Historical Archives
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