The Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), the first bank in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia, celebrated its 169th anniversary on Monday, Aug. 3, with an online mass attended by top executives and employees.
Founded in 1851 as El Banco Español Filipino de Isabel II, BPI ushered in the start of the Philippine banking and finance industry. The bank back then performed many functions — from providing credit to the National Treasury to printing and issuing currency — making it in effect, the country’s first central bank.
Fast forward to 2020, BPI said it is again ready to lend a lifeline to Filipinos especially in these trying times as the Philippines struggles to contain the devastation brought by the Covid-19 pandemic.
BPI chairman Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, BPI president and CEO Cezar P. Consing, and other members of the board led the celebration with an online anniversary mass with BPI employees across the nation.
“The combination of our branches, bravely manned, and our digital channels have allowed millions of Filipinos and thousands of businesses to conduct essential banking transactions throughout this challenging period. Our 169-year history has seen us make a real, positive difference in difficult times. It’s about trust, stability, and nation building,” Consing said.