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History of Basler Kantonalbank

To provide Basel residents with a secure investment and to support local businesses: The service mandate of BKB is still as relevant today as it was when it was founded in 1899.


The BKB is founded in the Gasthaus zur Krone.
The aim is to provide favourable loans to the craft and trade sector. Its second mission is to facilitate secure saving for the population by means of a state guarantee.


The first banknote from BKB is printed.
At this time, the canton of Basel-Stadt issued its own money. It was not until 1907 that the newly founded Swiss National Bank took over this task.


To ensure national supply during the First World War, the Confederation, cantons and municipalities, among others, establish the "Cooperative of Swiss Cheese Export Companies".
This marks the origin of today's Swiss Cheese Union. BKB supports the project with CHF 15 million.


The stock market crash and the ensuing global financial crisis have no significant effect on the Swiss stock market.
Swiss companies finance themselves mainly internally or via bank loans. Since BKB hardly has any assets abroad, the crisis bypasses it almost without a trace.


The bank moves into the new building on Spiegelgasse. Within five hours, BKB moves the entire inventory: the vault block with millions in assets, separated into blocks of up to 1800 kilograms, the cash stock in notes, gold and silver, as well as securities worth CHF 300 million.


During the war years, the bank has to cope with limited staff:
At the first general mobilisation in September, about one third of the total staff enter active military service.


Switzerland introduces the first cash machines.
BKB follows soon after. Today, it operates around 70 such devices in more than 30 locations.


A design in the spirit of the time: Reopening of the counter hall in the Aeschenvorstadt.
Between 1965 and 1990, BKB opens ten additional branches.


On the occasion of its centenary, BKB launches an ideas competition to make the city more livable.
Out of 971 submitted projects, 19 are awarded and implemented, including the night bus.


BKB acquires a majority stake in Bank Coop (now Bank Cler).
As a result, it is present throughout Switzerland and is broadly positioned.


BKB has been committed to the regional economy since the very beginning.
During this year, it introduces a new funding programme called KMUimpuls.


BKB moves into its new headquarters.
This step marks a turning point. The bank is rebuilding its business model and reorienting itself strategically. In the following years, it positions itself as a bank deeply rooted in Basel.


Bank Coop becomes Bank Cler.
Its fresh and original appearance is striking throughout Switzerland, as is the launch campaign on the "taboo topic" of money.


BKB opens its first autonomous branch.
It is true that clients do not meet employees physically. However, thanks to digital options such as video communication, they receive personal advice nevertheless.


Private Banking now at the Aeschenvorstadt.
Private Banking moves into new premises at Aeschenvorstadt 41.