Bank of Ireland
The Bank of Ireland (. ) is a commercial bank
A bank is a financial institution that serves as a financial intermediary. The term "bank" may refer to one of several related types of entities:...

 operation in Ireland, which is one of the 'Big Four
Big Four (banks)
Big Four is the colloquial name for the four main banks in several countries, where the banking industry is dominated by just four institutions and where the phrase has gained currency.-Australia:...

' in both parts of the island.

Historically the premier banking organisation in Ireland, the Bank occupies a unique position in Irish banking history. At the core of the modern-day group is the old Bank of Ireland, the ancient institution established by Royal Charter
Royal Charter
A royal charter is a formal document issued by a monarch as letters patent, granting a right or power to an individual or a body corporate. They were, and are still, used to establish significant organizations such as cities or universities. Charters should be distinguished from warrants and...

 in 1783.

In March 2011 during the Irish banking crisis the bank was found to be in need of an external €5.2 billion bailout.


Bank of Ireland is the oldest bank in continuous operation (apart from 4 closures due to bank strikes, 1950, 1966, 1971, 1976) in Ireland.

Chronology of history to 1990

  • 1719 – Abortive attempt to establish a bank to be called "Bank of Ireland". Another abortive attempt 2 years later.
  • 1782 – The bank was formed by an Act of the Irish Parliament
    Parliament of Ireland
    The Parliament of Ireland was a legislature that existed in Dublin from 1297 until 1800. In its early mediaeval period during the Lordship of Ireland it consisted of either two or three chambers: the House of Commons, elected by a very restricted suffrage, the House of Lords in which the lords...

     in 1782 to support public and commercial finances in Ireland.
  • 1783 – 25 June 1783, the Bank of Ireland opened for business at Mary's Abbey (Off Capel St., Dublin) in a private house previously owned by one Charles Blakeney. 12,700 banknotes were issued with a total value of £882,500.
  • 1785 – First forgeries of Bank of Ireland notes identified. Forgery
    Forgery is the process of making, adapting, or imitating objects, statistics, or documents with the intent to deceive. Copies, studio replicas, and reproductions are not considered forgeries, though they may later become forgeries through knowing and willful misrepresentations. Forging money or...

     became extensive in subsequent years.
  • 1787 – 2 March 1787, the bank suspended cash payouts during a banking crisis.
  • 1808 – 6 June 1808, Bank of Ireland moved to 2 College Green. This building had been the parliament building until the Act of Union 1800
    Act of Union 1800
    The Acts of Union 1800 describe two complementary Acts, namely:* the Union with Ireland Act 1800 , an Act of the Parliament of Great Britain, and...

     abolished the Irish Parliament. The Irish House of Commons
    Irish House of Commons
    The Irish House of Commons was the lower house of the Parliament of Ireland, that existed from 1297 until 1800. The upper house was the House of Lords...

     had been damaged in a fire, and considerable modifications were made to this area before opening as a bank. (The Irish House of Lords
    Irish House of Lords
    The Irish House of Lords was the upper house of the Parliament of Ireland that existed from mediaeval times until 1800. It was abolished along with the Irish House of Commons by the Act of Union.-Function:...

     was preserved, and remains to the present day, despite the fact that a statue of Queen Victoria was removed.)
  • 1820 – Bank of Ireland weathered one more of many banking crises – but many other banks fail.
  • 1825 – Bank of Ireland opened its first branch – in Cork
    Cork (city)
    Cork is the second largest city in the Republic of Ireland and the island of Ireland's third most populous city. It is the principal city and administrative centre of County Cork and the largest city in the province of Munster. Cork has a population of 119,418, while the addition of the suburban...

    . Six other branches were opened later in that year.
  • 1835 – Bank of Ireland introduced the overdraft
    An overdraft occurs when money is withdrawn from a bank account and the available balance goes below zero. In this situation the account is said to be "overdrawn". If there is a prior agreement with the account provider for an overdraft, and the amount overdrawn is within the authorized overdraft...

     – previously, all lending was by discounting of bills.
  • 1847 – Major banking crisis following the Great Irish Famine.
  • 1857 – Another banking crisis.
  • 1864 – Bank of Ireland first pays interest on deposits.
  • 1886 – Bank of Ireland first disclosed its accounts and balance sheet. Gross Profit was £220,681-9-5d. Total assets were £16,142,797-14-0d. There was another banking crisis, and a major bank failure – Munster Bank Ltd. Munster & Leinster Bank – now included in AIB
    Allied Irish Banks
    Allied Irish Banks p.l.c. is a major commercial bank based in Ireland.AIB is one of the so called "big four" commercial banks in the state. The bank has one of the largest branch networks in Ireland; only Bank of Ireland fully rivals it. AIB offers a full range of personal and corporate banking...

     was formed from the entrails.
  • 1914 – 190 staff members joined the army and saw service. 32 did not return.
  • 1919 – Irish banks recognise the Irish Bank Officials Association (IBOA), a banking union formed 2 years earlier.
  • 1922 – the bank's Governor Henry Guinness
    Henry Guinness
    Henry Seymour Guinness was an Irish politician and was formerly the Governor of the Bank of Ireland.-Public Life:...

     is appointed to the new Senate
    Seanad Éireann (Irish Free State)
    Seanad Éireann was the upper house of the Oireachtas of the Irish Free State from 1922–1936. It has also been known simply as the Senate, or as the First Seanad. The Senate was established under the 1922 Constitution of the Irish Free State but a number of constitutional amendments were...

     by W. T. Cosgrave.
  • 1926 – The Bank of Ireland Crest, originally applied for in 1783, was eventually granted. The Bank of Ireland took control of the National Land Bank - a friendly society. Following restructure as a limited company, it was rebranded as National City Bank Ltd.
  • 1929 & 1935 Legislation to reform the corporate structure of Bank of Ireland – Limited liability introduced.
  • 1948 – "The Bank of Ireland 1783-1946" by F.G. Hall was published jointly by Hodges Figgis (Dublin) and Blackwell's
    Blackwell UK Ltd is a national chain of bookshops, online retail, mail order and library supply services in the United Kingdom, which has an annual turnover of £74 million...

  • 1950 – Irish banks closed for 7 weeks due to a strike by members of the Irish Bank Officials Association. Other total closures in 1966, 1971, and 1976.
  • 1956 – The Bank was authorised to operate the Prize Bond
    Prize Bond
    A Prize Bond is a non-interest bearing security issued on behalf of the Irish Minister for Finance by the Prize Bond Company Limited. Funds raised are used to offset government borrowing and are refundable to the bond owner on demand...

     scheme, on behalf of the government, and continued to do so until 1989.
  • 1958 – The Bank took over the Hibernian Bank Limited.
  • 1965 – The National Bank Ltd, a bank founded by Daniel O'Connell
    Daniel O'Connell
    Daniel O'Connell Daniel O'Connell Daniel O'Connell (6 August 1775 – 15 May 1847; often referred to as The Liberator, or The Emancipator, was an Irish political leader in the first half of the 19th century...

     in 1835 had branches in Ireland and Britain. The Irish branches were acquired by Bank of Ireland and rebranded temporarily as National Bank of Ireland, before being fully incorporated into Bank of Ireland. The British branches were acquired by Williams & Glyn's Bank
    Williams & Glyn's Bank
    Williams & Glyn's Bank Limited was established in London in 1970, when the Royal Bank of Scotland merged its two subsidiaries in England and Wales, Williams Deacon's Bank Ltd. and Glyn, Mills & Co...

  • 1983 – Bank of Ireland Bi-Centenary. A commemorative stamp was issued. The Bank commissioned the publication of "An Irish Florolegium".

From the beginning, it was connected closely with the leading banking family in Dublin, the Huguenot
The Huguenots were members of the Protestant Reformed Church of France during the 16th and 17th centuries. Since the 17th century, people who formerly would have been called Huguenots have instead simply been called French Protestants, a title suggested by their German co-religionists, the...

 La Touche family. A member of that family – David La Touche – was the first Governor.

Role as government banker

The Bank of Ireland is not, and was never, the Irish central bank. However, as well as being a commercial bank - a deposit-taker and a credit institution - it performed many central bank functions, much like the earlier-established Bank of Scotland
Bank of Scotland
The Bank of Scotland plc is a commercial and clearing bank based in Edinburgh, Scotland. With a history dating to the 17th century, it is the second oldest surviving bank in what is now the United Kingdom, and is the only commercial institution created by the Parliament of Scotland to...

 and Bank of England
Bank of England
The Bank of England is the central bank of the United Kingdom and the model on which most modern central banks have been based. Established in 1694, it is the second oldest central bank in the world...

. The Bank of Ireland operated the Exchequer Account and during the nineteenth century acted as something of a banker of last resort. Even the titles of the chairman of the board of directors (the Governor) and the title of the board itself (the Court of Directors) suggest a central bank status.

From the foundation of the Irish Free State
Irish Free State
The Irish Free State was the state established as a Dominion on 6 December 1922 under the Anglo-Irish Treaty, signed by the British government and Irish representatives exactly twelve months beforehand...

 in 1922 until 31 December 1971, the Bank of Ireland was the banker of the Irish Government
Irish Government
The Government of Ireland is the cabinet that exercises executive authority in Ireland.-Members of the Government:Membership of the Government is regulated fundamentally by the Constitution of Ireland. The Government is headed by a prime minister called the Taoiseach...

, but was not the central bank
Central bank
A central bank, reserve bank, or monetary authority is a public institution that usually issues the currency, regulates the money supply, and controls the interest rates in a country. Central banks often also oversee the commercial banking system of their respective countries...

. This function was fulfilled by the Currency Commission, which was later superseded by the Central Bank of Ireland in 1942.


The headquarters of the bank until the 1970s was the impressive Bank of Ireland building
Irish Houses of Parliament
The Irish Houses of Parliament , also known as the Irish Parliament House, today called the Bank of Ireland, College Green due to its use as by the bank, was the world's first purpose-built two-chamber parliament house...

 on College Green
College Green
College Green is a three-sided "square" in the centre of Dublin. On its northern side is a building known today as the Bank of Ireland which until 1800 was Ireland's Parliament House. To its east stands Trinity College Dublin, the only constituent college of the University of Dublin. To its south...

, Dublin. This building was originally designed by Edward Lovett Pearce
Edward Lovett Pearce
Sir Edward Lovett Pearce was an Irish architect, and the chief exponent of palladianism in Ireland. He is thought to have initially studied as an architect under his father's first cousin, Sir John Vanbrugh. He is best known for the Irish Houses of Parliament in Dublin, and his work on Castletown...

 in 1729 to host the Irish Parliament, and it was the world's first purpose-built two-chamber parliament building.

The bank had planned to commission a building designed by Sir John Soane
John Soane
Sir John Soane, RA was an English architect who specialised in the Neo-Classical style. His architectural works are distinguished by their clean lines, massing of simple form, decisive detailing, careful proportions and skilful use of light sources...

 to be constructed on the site bounded by Westmoreland Street, Fleet Street, College Street and D'Olier Street (now occupied by the Westin Hotel). However the project was cancelled following the Act of Union 1800
Act of Union 1800
The Acts of Union 1800 describe two complementary Acts, namely:* the Union with Ireland Act 1800 , an Act of the Parliament of Great Britain, and...

, when the newly defunct Parliament building was bought by Bank of Ireland in 1803. The old Bank of Ireland building continues today as a working branch. Today, visitors can still view the impressive Irish House of Lords
Irish House of Lords
The Irish House of Lords was the upper house of the Parliament of Ireland that existed from mediaeval times until 1800. It was abolished along with the Irish House of Commons by the Act of Union.-Function:...

 chamber within the old headquarters building. The modern Irish Parliament is now housed in Leinster House
Leinster House
Leinster House is the name of the building housing the Oireachtas, the national parliament of Ireland.Leinster House was originally the ducal palace of the Dukes of Leinster. Since 1922, it is a complex of buildings, of which the former ducal palace is the core, which house Oireachtas Éireann, its...

 in Dublin. In 2011, the Irish Government set out proposals to acquire the building as a venue for the state to use as a cultural venue.

In the 1970s the bank moved its headquarters to a modern building on Lower Baggot Street, Dublin 2. As Frank McDonald notes in his book "Destruction of Dublin", when these headquarters were built, it caused the world price of copper to rise - such was the usage in the building. The main building is on the site of the former car assembly plant of Lincoln & Nolan, where Austin
Austin is the capital of the U.S. state of Texas.Austin may also refer to:-In the United States:*Austin, Arkansas*Austin, Colorado*Austin, Chicago, Illinois*Austin, Indiana*Austin, Minnesota*Austin, Nevada*Austin, Oregon...

 cars were assembled. Historically, the site was associated with the Battle of Rathmines
Battle of Rathmines
The Battle of Rathmines was fought in and around what is now the Dublin suburb of Rathmines in August 1649, during the Irish Confederate Wars, the Irish theatre of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms...

 in 1649, and it is said that the last skirmishes of that battle took place here. In addition to some Georgian houses, the site also included a pub (Laurence Ryans). The bank retained the pub licence for some years.

Built amidst a blazing row where Bank of Ireland was responsible for a weekend demolition of these Georgian houses, the bank as stands today is now regarded as an excellent example of Miesian architecture, and among the purest contemporary corporate architectural forms built in Dublin.
In 2010 the bank moved to a new, smaller headquarters on Mespil Road.

Recent history

  • 1995
    • 19 December: Bank of Ireland merge First New Hampshire Bank with Royal Bank of Scotland
      Royal Bank of Scotland
      The Royal Bank of Scotland Group is a British banking and insurance holding company in which the UK Government holds an 84% stake. This stake is held and managed through UK Financial Investments Limited, whose voting rights are limited to 75% in order for the bank to retain its listing on the...

      's Citizens Financial Group
      Citizens Financial Group
      Citizens Financial Group, Inc. is an American bank headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island, which operates in the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont. Citizens is a wholly owned...

  • 1996
    • 16 April: Bank of Ireland buys the Bristol and West
      Bristol and West
      Bristol & West is a former commercial bank in the United Kingdom which is a division of the Bank of Ireland. Bristol & West has its headquarters in Bristol, England. It was previously a building society known as the Bristol and West Building Society...

       building society for €882m, which keeps its own brand.
  • 1999
    • 22 May: It is announced Alliance & Leicester
      Alliance & Leicester
      Alliance & Leicester was a former UK-based bank and PLC, which in later years operated as a trading name of Santander UK before being rebranded as Santander. Alliance & Leicester was legally acquired in May 2010 by Santander UK, and was fully incorporated by 2011...

       is in merger talks with the Bank of Ireland.
    • 17 June: It is announced that merger talks with Alliance & Leicester have been called off.
  • 2000
    • 31 July: It is announced that Bank of Ireland is to acquire Chase de Vere.
  • 2002
    • 17 May: Bank of Ireland acquires Iridian, the US investment manager, which doubles the size of its asset management business.
  • 2005
    • 21 September: Bank of Ireland completes the sale of the Bristol and West branch and Direct Savings (Contact Centre) to Britannia Building Society
      Britannia Building Society
      The Britannia is a financial services institution and trading name of the Co-operative Bank Plc in the United Kingdom.Before the merger with the Co-operative, Britannia was a mutual building society, with headquarters in Leek, Staffordshire...

      . This is the first re-mutualisation of a former Mutual company. Britannia promises that there will be no compulsory redundancies.
  • 2008
    • 22 September: Moody's Investors Service has changed its outlook on Bank of Ireland from stable to negative. Moody's pinpointed concerns over weakening asset quality
      Asset quality
      Asset quality an evaluation of an asset to measure the credit risk associated with it.-Description:Asset quality is related to the left-hand side of the bank balance sheet. Bank managers are concerned with the quality of their loans since that provides earnings for the bank...

       and the impact of a more challenging economic environment on profitability at Bank of Ireland.
    • 2008 share price collapse, see below
  • 2009
    • 12 February: The Irish government announces a €7 billion rescue package for the bank and Allied Irish Banks plc.
    • 27 February biggest bank robbery in the history of the state took place at Bank of Ireland at College Green.
    • Consultants Oliver Wyman
      Oliver Wyman
      Oliver Wyman is an international management consulting firm. Founded in 1984, the firm adopted its current form in May 2007, when Mercer Oliver Wyman joined with Mercer Management Consulting and Mercer Delta to become one firm named Oliver Wyman. Oliver Wyman is headquartered in New York City with...

       validated Bank of Ireland’s bad debt levels at €6 billion over three years to March 2011, a bad debt level which was exceeded by almost €1 billion within a matter of months.
  • 2010
    • 16 April: The European Commission
      European Commission
      The European Commission is the executive body of the European Union. The body is responsible for proposing legislation, implementing decisions, upholding the Union's treaties and the general day-to-day running of the Union....

       orders the disposal of Bank of Ireland Asset Management, New Ireland Assurance, ICS Building Society, its US Foreign Exchange business and the stakes held in the Irish Credit Bureau and in an American Asset Manager followed the receipt of Irish Government State aid.
  • 2011
    • 24 February: The Securities Services Division is sold to Northern Trust Corporation.

Republic of Ireland

The Group provides a broad range of financial services in Ireland to the personal, commercial, industrial and agricultural sectors. These include checking and deposit services, overdrafts, term loans, mortgages, international asset financing, leasing, installment credit, debt financing, foreign exchange facilities, interest and exchange rate hedging instruments, executor and trustee services.

The Bank operates telephone and online banking services for its customers under the name 365 phone and 365 online respectively. The telephone banking service was launched in 1996 and was formerly known as Banking 365. The online banking service followed in 1997 and was initially known as Banking 365 online. It also offers the Laser
Laser (debit card)
Laser Card is a debit card scheme in Ireland. The Laser Scheme is maintained and operated by , a not-for-profit body owned by four leading financial institutions in Ireland and overseen since 2008 by the Oversight Unit of the Central Bank. The scheme was launched in 1996 and in 2010 there were...

 payment system.

The Group markets and sells its products on a domestic basis through the most extensive nationwide distribution network in Ireland and its direct telephone banking service. The Group has built a market share among credit institutions in Ireland of over 20% of resources and loans outstanding.

International Operations

The bank is headquartered in Dublin, and has operations throughout the Republic of Ireland. It also operates in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, particularly Northern Ireland, where it prints its own banknotes in Pounds Sterling
Pound sterling
The pound sterling , commonly called the pound, is the official currency of the United Kingdom, its Crown Dependencies and the British Overseas Territories of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, British Antarctic Territory and Tristan da Cunha. It is subdivided into 100 pence...

 (see section on banknotes below). In Great Britain
Great Britain
Great Britain or Britain is an island situated to the northwest of Continental Europe. It is the ninth largest island in the world, and the largest European island, as well as the largest of the British Isles...

, the bank expanded largely through the takeover of the Bristol and West Building Society in 1996. Bank of Ireland also provides financial services for the British Post Office
Post Office Ltd.
Post Office Ltd is a retail post office company in the United Kingdom that provides a wide range of products including postage stamps and banking to the public through its nationwide network of post office branches.-Structure:Post Office Ltd...

 throughout the UK.

Operations in the rest of the world are primarily undertaken by Bank of Ireland Corporate Banking who provide services in France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

 and the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...



Although the Bank of Ireland is not a central bank, it does have Sterling note-issuing rights in the United Kingdom. While the Bank is headquartered in Dublin, it has operations in Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland is one of the four countries of the United Kingdom. Situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland, it shares a border with the Republic of Ireland to the south and west...

, where it retains the legal right (dating from before the partition of Ireland
Partition of Ireland
The partition of Ireland was the division of the island of Ireland into two distinct territories, now Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland . Partition occurred when the British Parliament passed the Government of Ireland Act 1920...

) to print its own banknotes. These are pound sterling
Pound sterling
The pound sterling , commonly called the pound, is the official currency of the United Kingdom, its Crown Dependencies and the British Overseas Territories of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, British Antarctic Territory and Tristan da Cunha. It is subdivided into 100 pence...

 notes and equal in value to Bank of England notes
Bank of England note issues
The Bank of England, which is now the Central Bank of the United Kingdom, has issued banknotes since 1694. Since 1970, its new series of notes have featured portraits of British historical figures. Of the eight banks authorised to issue banknotes in the UK, only the Bank of England can issue...

, and should not be confused with banknotes of the former Irish pound
Irish pound
The Irish pound was the currency of Ireland until 2002. Its ISO 4217 code was IEP, and the usual notation was the prefix £...


Until April 2008, all Bank of Ireland notes featured the Queen's University of Belfast
Queen's University of Belfast
Queen's University Belfast is a public research university in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The university's official title, per its charter, is the Queen's University of Belfast. It is often referred to simply as Queen's, or by the abbreviation QUB...

 on the reverse side. A new series of £5, £10 and £20 notes issued in April 2008 (New-look notes will begin to be circulated in Apri), all featuring an illustration of the Old Bushmills Distillery
Old Bushmills Distillery
The Old Bushmills Distillery is a distillery in Bushmills, County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It is owned and operated by Diageo plc of London, England, and is a popular tourist attraction, with around 110,000 visitors per year...

, and these notes will gradually replace the previous series.

The principal difference between the denominations is their colour and size:
  • 5 pound note, blue
    Blue is a colour, the perception of which is evoked by light having a spectrum dominated by energy with a wavelength of roughly 440–490 nm. It is considered one of the additive primary colours. On the HSV Colour Wheel, the complement of blue is yellow; that is, a colour corresponding to an equal...

  • 10 pound note, pink
    Pink is a mixture of red and white. Commonly used for Valentine's Day and Easter, pink is sometimes referred to as "the color of love." The use of the word for the color known today as pink was first recorded in the late 17th century....

  • 20 pound note, green
    Green is a color, the perception of which is evoked by light having a spectrum dominated by energy with a wavelength of roughly 520–570 nanometres. In the subtractive color system, it is not a primary color, but is created out of a mixture of yellow and blue, or yellow and cyan; it is considered...

  • 50 pound note, blue-green

The Bank of Ireland does not issue banknotes in the Republic of Ireland
Republic of Ireland
Ireland , described as the Republic of Ireland , is a sovereign state in Europe occupying approximately five-sixths of the island of the same name. Its capital is Dublin. Ireland, which had a population of 4.58 million in 2011, is a constitutional republic governed as a parliamentary democracy,...

. Section 60 of the Currency Act 1927 removed the right of Irish banks to issue banknotes, however "consolidated banknotes", of a common design issued by all "Shareholder Banks" under the Act, were issued between 1929 and 1953. Theses notes were not legal tender
Legal tender
Legal tender is a medium of payment allowed by law or recognized by a legal system to be valid for meeting a financial obligation. Paper currency is a common form of legal tender in many countries....


Michael Soden

Michael Soden abruptly quit as group chief executive on 29 May 2004 when it was discovered that adult material that contravened company policy was found on his Bank PC. Soden issued a personal statement explaining that the high standards of integrity and behaviour in an environment of accountability, transparency and openness, which he espoused, would cause embarrassment to the Bank.

DIRT Controversy

An IR£30.5 million tax arrears liability was settled by Bank of Ireland in July 2000. The Bank told the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee Inquiry that its liability was in the region of £1.5 million. The settlement figure was 'dictated' by the Revenue Commissioners following an audit by the Commissioners. It was in Bank of Ireland that some of the most celebrated of the "celebrated cases" of non-compliance and bogus non-resident accounts have to date been discovered and disclosed. Thurles
Thurles is a town situated in North Tipperary, Ireland. It is a civil parish in the historical barony of Eliogarty and is also an ecclesiastical parish in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly...

, Boyle
Boyle, County Roscommon
Boyle is a town in County Roscommon, Ireland. It is located at the foot of the Curlew Mountains near Lough Key in the north of the county. Carrowkeel Megalithic Cemetery, the Drumanone Dolmen and the popular fishing lakes of Lough Arrow and Lough Gara are also close by...

, Roscrea
Roscrea is a small heritage town in North Tipperary, Ireland. The town has a population of 4,910. Its main industries include meat processing and pharmaceuticals. It is a civil parish in the historical barony of Ikerrin...

 (1990), Miltown Malbay
Miltown Malbay
Spanish Point Airfield is an privately owned airfield between Milltown Malbay and Spanish Point. The airfield, located on Sandhill Road in the townland Leagard South, was established by three local pilots in 1991, and the original clubhouse was opened by then Irish Minister for Defense Mr...

 (1991), Dundalk
Dundalk is the county town of County Louth in Ireland. It is situated where the Castletown River flows into Dundalk Bay. The town is close to the border with Northern Ireland and equi-distant from Dublin and Belfast. The town's name, which was historically written as Dundalgan, has associations...

 (1989/90), Killester
Killester is a small, largely residential suburb of Dublin and lies on the Northside of the city.-Location and access:Killester is located between Clontarf, Donnycarney, Raheny and Artane, and it falls within the postal districts of Dublin 3 or 5. St. Anne's Park lies just beyond Killester on the...

 (1992), Tullamore
Tullamore is a town in County Offaly, in the midlands of Ireland. It is Offaly's county town and the centre of the district.Tullamore is an important commercial and industrial centre in the region. Major international employers in the town include 'Tyco Healthcare' and 'Boston Scientific'. In...

 (1993), Mullingar
Mullingar is the county town of County Westmeath in Ireland. The Counties of Meath and Westmeath Act of 1542, proclaimed Westmeath a county, separating it from Meath. Mullingar became the administrative centre for County Westmeath...

 (1996), Castlecomer
Castlecomer is a town in the barony of Fassadinin, County Kilkenny in Ireland.The Irish name for the town translates to "The castle at the confluence of the rivers"; the "rivers" refers to the rivers Deen, Brocagh and Clohogue while the "castle" refers to the castle built by the Normans in 1171...

, Clonmel
Clonmel is the county town of South Tipperary in Ireland. It is the largest town in the county. While the borough had a population of 15,482 in 2006, another 17,008 people were in the rural hinterland. The town is noted in Irish history for its resistance to the Cromwellian army which sacked both...

, Ballybricken, Ballinasloe, Skibbereen
Skibbereen , is a town in County Cork, Ireland. It is the most southerly town in Ireland. It is located on the N71 national secondary road.The name "Skibbereen" means "little boat harbour." The River Ilen which runs through the town reaches the sea at Baltimore.-History:Prior to 1600 most of the...

 (1988), Dungarvan
Dungarvan is a town and harbour on the south coast of Ireland in the province of Munster. Dungarvan is the county town and administrative centre of County Waterford. The town's Irish name means "Garbhan's fort", referring to Saint Garbhan who founded a church there in the seventh century...

 and, disclosed to the Oireachtas
The Oireachtas , sometimes referred to as Oireachtas Éireann, is the "national parliament" or legislature of Ireland. The Oireachtas consists of:*The President of Ireland*The two Houses of the Oireachtas :**Dáil Éireann...

 Public Accounts Sub-Committee, Ballaghaderren (1998) and Ballygar
Ballygar is a town in County Galway, Ireland. It is 11.7 km from Roscommon town.- Ballygar - A timeline :The name Ballygar, historically Beallagarr, comes from...


The Public Accounts Sub-Committee Inquiry concluded that "the most senior executives in the Bank of Ireland did seek to set an ethical tone for the bank and unsuccessfully sought Revenue Commissioners assistance to promote an industry-wide Code of Practice.

Stolen laptops

In April 2008 it was announced that four laptops with data pertaining to 10,000 customers were stolen between June and October 2007. This customer information included names, addresses, bank details, medical and pension details.

The thefts were initially reported to the Garda Síochána
Garda Síochána
, more commonly referred to as the Gardaí , is the police force of Ireland. The service is headed by the Commissioner who is appointed by the Irish Government. Its headquarters are located in the Phoenix Park in Dublin.- Terminology :...

, however the Banks senior management did not know about the problem until February 2008 after an internal audit uncovered the theft and the Bank did not advise the Data Protection Commissioner
Data Protection Commissioner
In Ireland, the Data Protection Commissioner is the person responsible for the enforcement and monitoring of compliance with data protection legislation, including the Data Protection Acts, 1988-2003. He is also responsible for investigating breaches of the legislation and prosecuting the senders...

 and the Central Bank of Ireland until mid-April 2008. It also came to light that none of the laptops used encryption
In cryptography, encryption is the process of transforming information using an algorithm to make it unreadable to anyone except those possessing special knowledge, usually referred to as a key. The result of the process is encrypted information...

 to protect the sensitive data.

The Bank has since released a press release detailing the seven branches affected and its initial response, later in the month the Bank confirmed that 31,500 customer records were affected as well as an increased number of branches.

Record bank robbery

On 27 February 2009 it was reported that a criminal gang from Dublin had robbed €7 million from the Bank of Ireland's main branch in College Green
College Green
College Green is a three-sided "square" in the centre of Dublin. On its northern side is a building known today as the Bank of Ireland which until 1800 was Ireland's Parliament House. To its east stands Trinity College Dublin, the only constituent college of the University of Dublin. To its south...

. The robbery was the biggest in the history of the Republic of Ireland
Republic of Ireland
Ireland , described as the Republic of Ireland , is a sovereign state in Europe occupying approximately five-sixths of the island of the same name. Its capital is Dublin. Ireland, which had a population of 4.58 million in 2011, is a constitutional republic governed as a parliamentary democracy,...

, during which a girlfriend of an employee, her mother and her mother's five-year-old granddaughter were held hostage at gunpoint. Gardaí arrested six men the next day, and recovered 1.8 million euro.

A spokesperson for the bank said: "Bank of Ireland's priority is for the safety and well-being of the staff member and the family involved in this incident and all of the bank's support services have been made available to them."

Wrong Information on recapitalisation and bonuses

The information provided to the Department of Finance in 2009 in advance of a recapitalisation of the bank which cost the taxpayer €3.5 billion, “was incomplete and misleading”. It also gave wrong information to the Minister for Finance who in turn misled the Dail on €66 million in bonuses it paid since receiving a State guarantee. External examiners found it used “a restrictive and uncommon interpretation of what constituted a performance bonus” . Their report also found that there had been "a catalogue of errors" and that the information supplied by Bank of Ireland to the Department of Finance was "presented in a manner which minimised the level of additional payments made. The Bank paid €2 million by way of compensation to the Exchequer for providing "misleading" information.

Relationship with Indian Outsourcing Companies

The Bank has forged strong links with Indian IT outsourcing firm HCL Technologies. HCL was short-listed for a €450m IT infrastructure outsourcing contract in 2009 - the deal was ultimately awarded to IBM. Since then, BOI has given HCL a €30m Business Process Outsourcing contract and has selected them as strategic local resourcing partner in Ireland. In addition to that, HCL have opened a software factory for Bank of Ireland in India and has started to outsource production support for the retail banking and payments applications in BOI. This exclusive relationship with HCL has been seen as controversial in the context of the substantial Irish taxpayer investment in Bank of Ireland - and the lack of any significant investment by HCL in Ireland. A banking analyst said in July 2011 that BOI's IT system is "very antiquated."

Sports sponsorship

Bank of Ireland is a major sponsor of rugby union
Rugby union
Rugby union, often simply referred to as rugby, is a full contact team sport which originated in England in the early 19th century. One of the two codes of rugby football, it is based on running with the ball in hand...

 in Ireland, being the shirt sponsor of three of the four Irish provincial teams (Connacht Rugby
Connacht , formerly anglicised as Connaught, is one of the Provinces of Ireland situated in the west of Ireland. In Ancient Ireland, it was one of the fifths ruled by a "king of over-kings" . Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into a number of counties for...

, Leinster Rugby
Leinster is one of the Provinces of Ireland situated in the east of Ireland. It comprises the ancient Kingdoms of Mide, Osraige and Leinster. Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the historic fifths of Leinster and Mide gradually merged, mainly due to the impact of the Pale, which straddled...

 and Ulster Rugby
Ulster is one of the four provinces of Ireland, located in the north of the island. In ancient Ireland, it was one of the fifths ruled by a "king of over-kings" . Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into a number of counties for administrative and judicial...

) . The Irish Cricket team also enjoys sponsorship from the bank.

2008 share price collapse

On 21 Feb 2007, Bank of Ireland shares reached €18.83 during the day, and closed at €18.65. With almost exactly 1bn shares in issue, this valued the company at €18.8bn

On 5 March 2009, the shares reached €0.12 during the day, thereby reducing the value of the company by over 99% from its 2007 high. At the 2009 AGM, shareholders criticised the performance of Auditors, PriceWaterHouseCoopers.

The annual profitability as at Feb 2007, was subsequently published as €1.95bn
The profit for the half-year ended 30 Sept 2008 (unaudited) was published on 13 Nov 2008 as €0.706bn, and the outlook presented by the Governor was that the second-half of the financial year to March 2009 would be "marginally better than break-even." Thus the expected annual profit for 2008/9 is around €0.7bn.

The Central Bank told the Oireachtas
The Oireachtas , sometimes referred to as Oireachtas Éireann, is the "national parliament" or legislature of Ireland. The Oireachtas consists of:*The President of Ireland*The two Houses of the Oireachtas :**Dáil Éireann...

Enterprise Committee that shareholders who lost their money in the banking collapse are to blame for their fate and got what was coming to them for not keeping bank chiefs in check, but did admit that the Central Bank had failed to give sufficient warning about reckless lending to property developers.

External links

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