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CIB Bank is the second-biggest commercial bank in Hungary, after the 1 January 2008 merger with Inter-Európa Bank. This follows the 2007 merger of their respective Italian parent companies, Banca Intesa and Sanpaolo IMI to form Intesa Sanpaolo.
The founding predecessor of the present CIB Bank Ltd. was established in Budapest on November 9, 1979, under the same name as an offshore-like dollar based bank. It started its operation on January 1, 1980. Apart from the National Bank of Hungary, the shareholders of the bank included leading European and Japanese banks. CIB started its business with an authorized and paid-up capital of USD 20 million, and conducted it in a geographically neutral manner, influenced only by business considerations.
CIB was registered under the Hungarian Company Law of 1875, subsequently replaced by the Company Law of 1988. Until the end of 1995 the bank pursued its operation on the basis of a licence issued by the Ministry of Finance and then on December 21, 1995 the State Banking Supervision licensed CIB Bank to conduct a commercial banking business.
On the basis of the operating licence, the bank performed transactions in convertible currencies only. The customers of the bank gradually included more and more Hungarian companies and organisations making use of the services of the bank subject to the licences of the foreign exchange authorities.
Since the customers of the bank showed an ever-increasing need for HUF transactions, CIB and its foreign shareholders decided to found an onshore bank. This became possible with the establishment of the two-tier banking system. This was how CIB Hungária Bank Rt. was founded in 1988 and thus the convertible currency services of CIB were completed with commercial banking services available in HUF.
CIBINTRA International Trading Co. Ltd. was established in 1989 by Central-European International Bank Ltd. and its domestic subsidiary, CIB Hungária Bank Rt. on the basis of Act VI. (Company Law) of 1988. Its legal successor, CIB Rent Leasing Co. Ltd. together with the newly founded CIB Leasing Co. Ltd., deal with financial and operating lease activities.
CIB Securities Ltd. is the investment company of CIB Bank. Its legal predecessor, CIB Broker Co. Ltd. was founded in December 1992 as a fully owned subsidiary of CIB Hungária Bank Rt. Following several capital increases, the initial capital of HUF 5 million grew to HUF 1.8 billion by December 1996 and on December 31, 1996 the company transformed into a joint stock company. The company meets the criteria of an investment company required in the Securities Act. As a result of the decisions of the shareholder aiming to increase capital, the registered and fully paid-up capital of the company grew to HUF 3.1 billion in January 1998 and to HUF 4.4 billion in March 1999.The company has been a member of the Budapest Stock Exchange since June 1993. It has been licensed for full securities trading and issuing activities since November 1994. In October 1995, its scope of activities was extended with fund management. CIB Securities Ltd. entered the futures market first as a broker and then on January 1, 1997 it became a primary dealer of government securities.
CIB Securities Ltd. is one of the leading participants on the government securities market. Considering corporate bonds, CIB Securities Ltd. had the largest turnover among providers of investment services.CIB Securities Ltd. founded CIB Investment Fund Management Ltd. on April 1, 1997. The company first launched CIB-KINCSEM Open-Ended Investment Fund on June 5, 1997, which was followed by CIB Open-Ended Equity Fund on May 7, 1998. The third fund - the CIB International Securities Fund - was launched on the market on May 3, 1999. The fourth member of the CIB Fund Family - the CIB Money Market Fund - was launched in May 2000. The name and investment strategy of the CIB International Securities Fund was changed in May 2001. It now operates as the CIB European Equity Fund.
CIB Service Ltd. was founded on the basis of the resolution passed by the Board of Directors in September 1996. The objective of the company is property management and rendering services, primarily to cater for the physical needs of the Group's headquarters and branch network. At the end of 1997 the Bank's organization and ownership underwent a profound change. The change in the regulatory environment, requirements deriving from approaching European integration made it necessary for the National Bank of Hungary to sell its 34% stake. The other shareholders had pre-emptive rights for purchasing these shares. The rearrangement of the ownership structure took place in a way that one of the founding shareholders, the Banca Commerciale Italiana Group purchased not only the shares of NBH but also those of the other shareholders, except for 5% retained temporarily by the Long-Terms Credit Bank of Japan.
The change in the regulatory environment, particularly the liberalization of foreign exchange transactions caused the earlier authorizations of CIB to lose their practical value. Also, the simultaneous operation of two banks became a source of difficulties to an increasing extent. Maintaining the original status of CIB and the resulting operation of two separate banks made no sense any longer. Consequently, Central-European International Bank Ltd. and CIB Hungária Bank Rt. amalgamated as of January 1, 1998. This new bank continued operation under the name of the former parent bank with a full authorization to conduct both local currency and foreign exchange business, like any other domestic commercial bank. The unified bank offers its clientele all services offered by the two banks prior to the merger.
CIB Bank started to establish its branch network in 1992. The process accelerated during the last few years. At the beginning of 2006 the bank had 98 active branches, of which 44 were located and served the customers in Budapest and 54 in the countryside.
In early 1999, another change occurred in the ownership structure. The Long-Term Credit Bank of Japan decided to part with its 5% equity participation. The Italian banking group, already the majority shareholder, acquired the shares and became the sole and exclusive shareholder of CIB Bank.
Following these changes, Banca Intesa acquired influential participation in the parent company, the Banca Commerciale Italiana, seated in Milan, so the Group changed its name to Gruppo Banca Intesa, effective 1 Jan. 2003.
In Jan. 2007, by way of the fusion of the parent bank of CIB, Banca Intesa and Sanpaolo IMI, the third-largest Italian Bank, the biggest bank group of Italy came about under the name Intesa Sanpaolo S.p.A. The group plays a definitive role in the European financial market.
Following the example of the mother institutions, CIB Bank and Inter-Europa Bank have also joined their forces, mixing the ancestors best knowledge and tradition. From 1 January 2008 it will continue its activity under the name CIB Bank Ltd. With the merger, Hungary's second largest bank started to operate, which was resulted in a branch network of almost 140 units, multiple prize-winner electronic channels, and many renewed products and services.