Banque Misr

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Banque Misr S.A.E.
بنك مصر ش.م.م.
TypeGovernment-owned corporation
IndustryBanking and financial services
Founded13 April 1920; 101 years ago (1920-04-13)
FounderJoseph Cattaui, Talaat Harb
Number of locations
Key people
Mohamed Mahmoud Eletreby (CEO and Chairman)
  • IncreaseEGP 1.161 Billion (2013)
  • EGP 709 million (2012)
Total assets
  • IncreaseEGP 218.2 Billion (2013)
  • EGP 187.8 Billion (2012)

Banque Misr (Arabic: بنك مصر‎) is an Egyptian bank co-founded by industrialist Joseph Aslan Cattaui Pasha and economist Talaat Harb Pasha in 1920. The government of the United Arab Republic nationalized the bank in 1960. The bank has branch offices in all of Egypt's governorates, and currency exchange and work permit offices for foreign workers in Egypt.


The idea of a national bank of Egypt dates to at least the days of Muhammad Ali, who ordered the establishment of a bank with 700,000 riyals shortly before he became ill and died. Amin Shumayyil wrote an article in favor of the idea in April 26, 1879 in the newspaper Al-Tijara; although a number of Egyptian dignitaries met to discuss the project, the conflict between the Khedive Isma'il Pasha and the National Assembly and subsequent ʻUrabi revolt doomed the idea this time. Revolt leader Ahmed ʻUrabi’s friend Wilfrid Scawen Blunt reports in his memoirs that Urabi had envisioned a “credit bank” for farmers.[2][3]

Omar Lotfi Bey, a member of the Watani Party and Vice-President of the School of Law (now part of Cairo University) revived the idea in lectures at the Universities’ Club beginning on November 1, 1908, but his suggestions of using German and Italian assistance and credit were politically controversial.[2]

Joseph Cattaui and Talaat Harb co-founded Banque Misr in 1920.[4] Talaat had published books in 1907 and 1911 calling for the founding of a national bank with Egyptian financing. (The National Bank of Egypt was British-owned, and all the other banks in Egypt were owned by foreigners.) Harb modeled Bank Misr's operations on those of Deutsche Orientbank with which he was familiar due to his friendship with the owner of a Sephardi Jewish bank, Banque Suarès. Harb established Banque Misr and its companies on the basis of certain concepts: all its dealings were in Arabic, Egyptians operated the bank, and the bank restricted share ownership to Egyptian citizens. Misr's Board of Directors included a number of Sephardic Jews and a Coptic Christian.

In 1926 Bank Misr established its first foreign subsidiary, Banque Misr-La France, to serve Egyptian tourists to France. Four years later, Bank Misr joined with Banque Essadine, in Lebanon, to form the joint-venture Banque Misr-Syrie-Liban. This bank then absorbed Banque Ezzeddine & Adib (Izz al-Din) in Tripoli.

Banque Misr failed in 1939, but was then reorganized.

Talaat Harb and Medhat Yakan at the opening of a new branch of Banque Misr in 1935.

In 1960 Gamal Nasser nationalised all banks in Egypt, foreign and domestic, including the four largest domestic banks — National Bank of Egypt, Banque Misr, Bank of Alexandria and Banque du Caire. The next year, Syria nationalized all banks operating in the country, including Banque Misr's operations there.

Misr established Misr American International Bank (MAIB) with Bank of America.
Misr established Misr Exterior Bank in a joint venture with Banco Exterior de España.


Investment finance[edit]

The General Investment Funds Administration was founded in 1994 to expand the bank’s offerings with an eye toward flexibility and low costs. Banque Misr manages individual, corporate, and institutional investments both on the long and short terms. Eight investments funds are offered, each with their own investment strategy, earning a regional prize two years in a row.

  • First Fund
  • Second Fund (growth capital)
  • Third Fund (cumulative return and periodic distribution)
  • Fourth Fund (by sharia with the help of Al-Hosn Fund)
  • Omar Fund (accumulative investment with life insurance and capital guarantee)

Venture capital[edit]

  • Establishes projects on behalf of clients, obtains official approvals and licenses, prepares incorporation contracts as well as articles of association and by-laws, takes the month-long procedure, publishes and registers
  • Organizes underwriting for new projects
  • Builds the share capital of existing companies, ends their procedures, and issues certificates of deposit
  • Issues bonds for corporations and organizations
  • Liquidates companies and handles related financial, legal, and tax procedures
  • Registers companies’ shares as a custodian bank
  • Appraising companies’ assets and extracting their fair share price with specialized expert offices

Real estate[edit]

  • Buying and selling real estate and farmland on behalf of clients
  • Auctioning off all kinds of real estate
  • Brokering residential and administrative properties for clients
  • Promoting industrial and tourist projects, residential and administrative units, villas, resorts, and amusement parks, along with conventional direct buyer-seller transactions

Portfolio management[edit]

  • Providing technical advice and expertise to help establish projects
  • Paying periodic obligations on clients’ behalf to government agencies and creditors
  • Liquidating inheritances in Egypt and abroad and dividing among the heirs

Other services[edit]

  • Preparing economic feasibility studies for clients’ project in specialized expert offices
  • Preparing for exhibitions, seminars, and national and international conferences
  • Other non-traditional services

Telephone banking[edit]

Banque Misr provides telephone banking over the number 19888, with complete confidentiality using a passcode and a serial number for each account; supplying these yields the balance and the last five transactions.

Banque Misr Wallet[edit]

In March 2017, Banque Misr launched its online banking services for electronic payment over a mobile phone. The Wallet can be used to deposit and withdraw money in accounts, transfer from one enabled account to another, pay utility bills, charge companies’ balance, donate, pay fines, receive wire transfers, and pay for purchases from approved merchants.[5]

Areas served[edit]

  • Boasting a unique global presence, Banque Misr has pioneered the latest banking innovations nationally and includes one of the largest computer centers in the Middle East linking its 626 branches and 2,516 ATMs throughout the country. From 2005 to 2009, the company built its network between branches. By the end of this timeframe, the company had 32 affiliated Islamic banking branches. The largest credit card issuer in Egypt, it is also the first bank in the country to provide contactless payment.
  • United Arab Emirates: Established in 1974 as Banque du Caire, the division’s name was changed in 2008 to match the main bank. There are 5 branches in the Emirates.[6]
  • Lebanon: Banque Misr is one of the oldest banks active in Lebanon, founded in 1929, and has 18 branches throughout the country with capital of 100 billion Lebanese pounds.
  • France
  • Germany
  • Saudi Arabia: On April 6, 2021, the Saudi Cabinet licensed Banque Misr to open a branch in the Kingdom.[7]


  1. ^ ar: بنك مصر يحقق أعلى أرباح في تاريخه بـ3.383 مليار جنيه
  2. ^ a b Raḍwān, Fatḥī (1970). Ṭalʻat Ḥarb : baḥth fī al-ʻaẓamah. Cairo: Dar al-Kitab al-'Arabī. pp. 68, 131.
  3. ^ Davis, Eric (1983). Challenging Colonialism: Bank Misr and Egyptian Industrialization, 1920-1941. Princeton: Princeton University Press. p. 103. ISBN 9780691641362.
  4. ^ Earl L. Sullivan (1 January 1986). Women in Egyptian Public Life. Syracuse University Press. p. 171. ISBN 978-0-8156-2354-0. Retrieved 6 October 2014.
  5. ^ Yaqoub, Ahmed (November 7, 2018). "بنك مصر أول بنك يوفر خدمة السحب والإيداع لمحافظ الهاتف المحمول الإلكترونية". Youm7. Retrieved 18 May 2021.
  6. ^ "Profile". Banque Misr UAE. Retrieved 18 May 2021.
  7. ^ "سياسي / مجلس الوزراء يعقد جلسته ـ عبر الاتصال المرئي ـ برئاسة خادم الحرمين الشريفين". Saudi Press Agency. April 6, 2021. Retrieved 18 May 2021.

External links[edit]