HSBC in India

HSBC’s origins in India date back to 1853 when the Mercantile Bank of India was established in Mumbai. The bank has grown steadily and now offers products and services to corporate and commercial banking clients and retail customers.

The Mercantile Bank of India, London and China was founded in Bombay (now Mumbai). By 1855, the Mercantile Bank had opened offices in London, Madras (Chennai), Colombo, Kandy, Calcutta (Kolkata), Singapore, Hong Kong, Canton (Guangzhou) and Shanghai. In 1950 it moved into its new head office building at Flora Fountain in Mumbai.

The Mercantile Bank was bought in 1959 by The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited. Founded in 1865 to serve the needs of the merchants of the China coast and finance the growing trade between China, Europe and the US, HSBC has been an international bank from its earliest days.

HSBC in India has been active in the development of the Indian banking industry - even giving India its first ATM in 1987.

Financial information


For details about HSBC’s global operations, Group board members and financial results, go to our corporate website

Community

Learn more about our programmes with selected partners to support community projects in India in areas including education and the environment.


HSBC Group members in India

  • The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited
  • HSBC Asset Management (India) Private Limited
  • HSBC Electronic Data Processing (India) Private Limited
  • HSBC Professional Services (India) Private Limited
  • HSBC Securities and Capital Markets (India) Private Limited
  • HSBC Software Development (India) Private Limited
  • HSBC InvestDirect (India) Limited
  • HSBC InvestDirect Securities (India) Private Limited (formerly known as HSBC InvestDirect Securities (India) Limited)
  • HSBC InvestDirect Financial Service (India) Limited (formerly known as Investsmart Financial Services Limited) HSBC InvestDirect Sales & Marketing (India) Limited
  • HSBC Agency (India) Private Limited
  • HSBC Global Shared Services (India) Private Limited

Businesses

HSBC serves its customers in India through our four global businesses:

  • Retail Banking and Wealth Management: The Bank offers a wide range of services and products to resident as well as non-resident Indian customers based in various countries across the globe.
  • Commercial Banking: Commercial Banking (CMB) provides services to business and corporate clients. Our services include business accounts, payments and cash management solutions, trade services, and a range of borrowing solutions.
  • Global Private Banking: HSBC Private Banking offers a range of products and services including advisory and wealth management products and services for high net worth clients and their families.
  • Global Banking and Markets: Global Banking and Markets business provides financial products and services for corporate and institutional clients. This includes transaction banking, treasury services, investment banking, advisory, capital markets, foreign exchange, fixed income and derivatives.

Other entities

  • Global Asset Management: HSBC Asset Management (India) Private Limited, investment manager to HSBC Mutual Fund, offers a flexible product range to individual and institutional investors including fixed income/pension mandates for large institutional clients.
  • Global Service Delivery: Global Service Delivery in India has more than 20,000 employees and operates out of 11 Group Service Centres (GSCs). There are three centres each in Bangalore and Hyderabad; while Gurgaon, Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai and Vizag have one centre each.
  • HSBC Securities and Capital Markets (India) Private Limited: HSBC Securities and Capital Markets (India) Private Limited offers services in Investment Banking (IB), Project and Export Finance, Equities research and broking. The IB business includes mergers and acquisition advisory services and equity and debt origination. Project and Export Finance services are provided to governments, large corporates and top-tier banks. Equities research and broking primarily cater to the institutional client base which includes foreign institutional investors, local institutions, mutual funds, insurance companies, and select high net worth and corporate clients.
  • Global Software Development: HSBC Global Software Delivery in India (registered entity - HSBC Software Development (India) Private Limited (HSDI)) is spread across five locations in Pune and Hyderabad. It supports the Group’s IT requirements worldwide through development, maintenance and diverse banking applications.
  • Audit Services: HSBC Professional Services (India) Private Limited (HPSI) provides internal audit services to global businesses and global functions across the HSBC Group and is also involved in regional audit work in Asia-Pacific.
  • HSBC InvestDirect: HSBC InvestDirect (India) Limited (HIDL) through its subsidiary HSBC InvestDirect Financial Services Limited (HIFSL) offers lending to high net worth individuals and corporate customers.
  • Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance Company Limited: This is a joint venture between Canara Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce and HSBC Insurance (Asia Pacific) Holdings Limited.

HSBC Group history timeline


1865
 
2016

Hong Kong harbour, Chinese artist, early 1860s

Staff in Fuzhou, China, 1887

Portrait of Thomas Jackson, around 1890

Chinese railway bond certificate, 1907

Staff in military uniform, First World War

Hong Kong building, 1965

Prison camp diary of HSBC staff member Max Haymes, 1943

Hong Kong garment factory, around 1950

Persian banknote, early 20th century

UK cash machine, around 1970

HSBC office, New York, 1999

HSBC lion, London, present day

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The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited opened in Hong Kong on 3 March 1865 and in Shanghai one month later. It was the first locally owned bank to operate according to Scottish banking principles.

By 1875 HSBC was present in seven countries across Asia, Europe and North America. It financed the export of tea and silk from China, cotton and jute from India, sugar from the Philippines and rice and silk from Vietnam.

By 1900, after strong growth under Chief Manager Thomas Jackson, the bank had expanded into 16 countries and was financing trade across the world. Bullion, exchange and merchant banking were important features of the bank’s business.

In the early 20th century, HSBC widened the scope of its activities in Asia. It issued loans to national governments to finance modernisation and infrastructure projects such as railway building.

The First World War brought disruption and dislocation to many businesses. By the 1920s, however, Asia was beginning to prosper again as new industries developed and trade in commodities such as rubber and tin soared.

The 1930s brought recession and turmoil to many markets. Nonetheless, HSBC asked architects Palmer and Turner to design a new head office in Hong Kong: “Please build us the best bank in the world.” The cutting-edge art deco building opened in 1935.

The bank faced one of its most challenging times during the Second World War. Staff in Asia showed huge courage in the face of adversity. Many became prisoners of war. Only the London, Indian and US branches remained in full operation.

At the end of the war, HSBC took on a key role in the reconstruction of the Hong Kong economy. Its support helped established manufacturers as well as newcomers to Hong Kong grow their business.

By the 1970s the bank had expanded through acquisition. HSBC bought Mercantile Bank and The British Bank of the Middle East in 1959. In 1972 it formed a merchant banking arm, extending its range of services.

In the 1980s HSBC bought Marine Midland Bank in the US. In 1992, the newly created HSBC Holdings plc made a recommended offer for full ownership of the UK’s Midland Bank. Following the acquisition, HSBC moved its headquarters to London.

In 1998, the bank announced it would adopt a unified brand, using HSBC and the hexagon symbol everywhere it operated.

As new markets blossom and flourish, HSBC continues to be where the growth is, connecting customers to opportunities. The bank enables businesses to thrive and economies to prosper, helping people fulfil their hopes and dreams and realise their ambitions.