Banco Mercantil or simply Mercantil is a Venezuelan financial institution based in Caracas. It's the second most important bank in the country. At the end of 2007, it owned 321 agencies, 313 of them established in Venezuela.
Banco Mercantil was founded in 1917 as Banco Mercantil Americano, but in 23 March 1925 is renamed as Banco Neerlando Venezolano. The following year was again established with the name Banco Mercantil y Agricola (Mercantile and agricultural bank) at the same time the Venezuelan government allow it the permission to issue banknotes together with another five financial institutions due to the unexistence of a central bank. In 1940, the bank stopped the issue of banknotes after the establishment of the Banco Central de Venezuela.
In 1968, it became the official representative of Diners Club in Venezuela. Since the 1970s the bank achieved the opening of subsidiaries in Brazil, Curazao, Germany, Panama, United Kingdom and United States.
In 1982, was built the skyscraper Torre Mercantil to set up the new bank headquarter's. In 1994, it was not really affected by the economic crisis in Venezuela. In 2000, Mercantil buy a lot of financial and insurance institutions as Interbank, Venezolana Entidad de Ahorro y Prestamo, Banco Monagas, Seguros Orinoco, among others. At the end of 2007, Mercantil controlled the 12,29% of the bancary market share in Venezuela, just behind Banesco.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Banco Mercantil