Friday, August 05, 2005

Quaker History/Business/Banking

Superbrands case studies: Barclays

Design Bulletin/

Barclays origins can be traced back to a modest business founded more than 300 years ago in the heart of London's financial district. In the late seventeenth century, the streets of the City of London may not have been paved with gold, but they were filled with goldsmithbankers.

They provided monarchs and merchants with the money they needed to fund their ventures around the world. One such business was founded by John Freame and his partner Thomas Gould in Lombard Street in 1690. The name Barclay became associated with the company in 1736, when James Barclay - who had married John Freame's daughter - became a partner. Private banking businesses were commonplace in the eighteenth century, keeping their clients' gold deposits secure and lending to credit-worthy merchants. In 1896, 20 of them formed a new joint-stock bank.

The leading partners of the new bank, which was named Barclay and Company, were already connected by a web of family, business and religious relationships. The company became known as the Quaker Bank, because this was the religion of the founding families. The new bank had 182 branches, mainly in the East and South East, and deposits of £26 million - a substantial sum of money in those days. It expanded its branch network rapidly by taking over other banks, including Bolithos in the South West in 1905 and United Counties Bank in the Midlands in 1916.

In 1918 the company amalgamated with the London, Provinccial and South Western Bank to become one of the UK's 'big five' banks. By 1926 the bank had 1,837 outlets. Barclays acquired Martins Bank in 1969, the largest UK bank to have its head office outside London. And in 2000 it took over The Woolwich, a leading mortgage bank and former building society founded in 1847.

The development of today's global business began in earnest in 1925, with the merger of three banks - the Colonial Bank, the Anglo Egyptian Bank and the National Bank of South Africa to form Barclays International Operations. This added business in much of Africa, the Middle East and the West Indies.Today, Barclays operates in more than 60 countries worldwide. ...


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