Saudi British Bank: HSBC's Saudi Arabian Experience|Business Strategy|Case Study|Case Studies

Saudi British Bank: HSBC's Saudi Arabian Experience

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Case Details:

Case Code : BSTR076
Case Length : 22 Pages
Period : 1959 - 2003
Organization : HSBC, Saudi British Bank
Pub Date : 2003
Teaching Note :Not Available
Countries : Saudi Arabia
Industry : Banking

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Background Note - The HSBC Group

HSBC's origins can be traced back to 1865, when Thomas Sutherland, the Hong Kong Superintendent of the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company, realized the need for local banking facilities in China and Hong Kong. The bank was established as The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited in March 1865 with support from investors from Hong Kong, American, European and Indian firms. Offices were opened in both Shanghai and London in April 1865. In 1866, the bank formally adopted the name HSBC.

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During the rest of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, the bank expanded rapidly in the Asia-Pacific region through organic growth as well as by entering into various strategic alliances. HSBC opened branches in Japan (in 1866, where it acted as a banking advisor to the government), Thailand (in 1888, where it printed the country's first banknotes), India (1867), Philippines (1875), Singapore (1877) and other geographical locations which are now recognized as Malaysia, Burma, Vietnam and Sri Lanka. By the 1880s, HSBC became the banker for the Hong Kong Government and the only joint banker for British accounts in Japan, Singapore, China and Penang.

By 1902, HSBC had become the foremost financial institution in Asia and was regarded as the pioneer of modern banking practices in the Asia-Pacific region.

In spite of the disruption caused by the First World War to international trade, HSBC prospered and continued expanding within Asia. It opened new branches in Bangkok (1921), Manila (1922) and Shanghai (1923).

In 1946, after the Second World War, HSBC played an important role in reconstructing the Hong Kong economy.

HSBC's support to skilled and experienced entrepreneurs contributed greatly to the revival of the manufacturing sector in Hong Kong. By the mid-1950s, HSBC's total assets stood at HK$36 billion (Hong Kong Dollar). However, the company's board realized that HSBC's future growth prospects would be limited if it restricted its operations to Hong Kong and China. Thus, HSBC decided to diversify both its business and its geographical spread through a series of acquisitions and alliances. From 1953 onwards, HSBC expanded its operations mainly by acquiring other banks and forming alliances (Refer Table I for key events in the company's history till 2003)...

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