Banking Services and Financial Institutions
Barbados, an island of 166 square miles, has a variety of commercial banks in operation, some Caribbean owned and the rest divisions of well-established Canadian-based institutions.
Each bank has branches all over the island, offering a range of everyday personal and business services, and a host of ATMs for added convenience. The banks accept all major international credit cards.
» Barbados National Bank (BNB) is the island’s oldest local commercial bank. It was established in 1978 by an Act of Parliament and days later acquired the assets of the (then local) Bank of America branch in Bridgetown.
After some financial turbulence in the 1990s, the company recovered to post a profit of $19.6 M in 2001. Then in March of 2003, the Government sold a 57 percent shareholding in BNB to Republic Bank Limited (RBL) of Trinidad and Tobago.
Six months later, RBL increased its shareholding to 65%. As of September 2007, the Bridgetown headquartered BNB had recorded a post-tax profit of $51.3 million for the last financial year.
BNB operates nine branches and 20 ATMs and provides all the traditional consumer and business services.
» In 2012, First Citizens (Barbados) Bank acquired the Bermuda-based Butterfield Bank (Barbados) Limited. First-Citizens Bank is a regional financial institution with operations in Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, and Costa Rica.
With over five convenient branch locations and various ATM locations in Barbados, First Citizens offers a full range of banking services, including savings and chequing accounts, credit card services, and corporate banking services.
» CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank is the result of a 2002 merger of two of the oldest banks in the region, Barclays PLC Caribbean and Canada’s CIBC West Indies Holdings, both of which had combined experience of nearly 250 years.
FirstCaribbean International Bank (Barbados) Ltd. has its head office at Warrens, St. Michael. It operates ten branches in Barbados, with 31 instant tellers, a Wealth Management Centre, and a Capital Markets Office in Bridgetown. Besides Barbados, the merged entity operates in 16 other Caribbean countries, with over 100 branches.
In December 2006, CIBC bought out the Barclays stake and became the primary shareholder in FirstCaribbean, holding 91.5 percent of the company. At last count, FCIB had assets of over US$12b.
» Canadian owned Scotiabank has been serving Barbados since 1956. Its network comprises eight branches strategically located across the island, plus a string of ATM’s. Its central office is on Broad Street, in the heart of Bridgetown.
Scotiabank, which first came to the Caribbean in 1889, when it opened a branch in Jamaica, is one of the three banks in Barbados which offer weekend service. Like its competitors, this bank provides a full range of personal and business services.
» RBTT Bank Barbados is owned by one of the Caribbean’s leading financial groups – RBTT Financial of Trinidad and Tobago. RBTT Financial Holdings Limited acquired the company from Caribbean Commercial Bank Limited in June 2004.
It is one of the smaller players in the Barbados banking sector, with four branches and the head office in Bridgetown.
The company’s 2007 financial report reflects a record pre-tax profit of $9.1 million — a 36% increase over the previous year. Total assets grew by 20% to $593 million, primarily due to a growth in the loan book of $110 million.
RBTT Bank Barbados offers a comprehensive range of individual and commercial banking services, including demand deposits, time deposits, and regular savings accounts; chequing accounts; trade finance and international money transfer services; retail and consumer lending including credit cards.
Strategically located across Barbados, the banks have with opening hours that include Saturdays.
RBTT Financial Holdings Limited, in March 2008, announced that its shareholders have voted in favor of amalgamating RBTT with a Caribbean subsidiary of the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC).
» Royal Bank of Canada is one of three Canadian owned banks operating in Barbados and has been on the island from as far back as February 1911.
Its network comprises seven branches, a Private Banking Centre, and two Lending Centres strategically located across the island. Its other channels include a system of 18 ATMs, Royal Online Banking, and Point Of Sale Terminals at a variety of merchants.
Barbados Banking hours are generally:
» Monday – Thursday
» 8:00am – 3.00pm
» 8:00am – 5.00pm
Banking services are available on weekends from some First Citizens branches, Scotiabank and RBTT Bank.
» Republic Bank (Barbados)
» CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank (Barbados)
» Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank)
» RBTT Barbados (RBC Royal Bank)
First-Citizens (Barbados) Bank