Aleksanterinkatu 36 B, Helsinki. The museum is located in the vault of the building and is not wheelchair accessible. The wooden front door of the building is usually locked but has a buzzer. The next open house will be on Thursday 2 May 15.00-17.00. Guided tours at 15.00 and 16.00. No pre-booking required. Welcome!
Nordea Bank Museum is located in the Union Bank of Finland's Old Banking Hall at the address Aleksanterinkatu 36 B, Helsinki. Completed in 1898, the building was designed by architect and professor Gustaf Nyström. Its exterior features 11 reliefs designed by sculptor Walter Runeberg. The building was used as a bank branch until 1936. Photo: Kasakka Media.
Nordea's history in Finland begins with the establishment of the Union Bank of Finland, the first commercial bank in the country. The Senate approved the bank's license on 21 May 1862 and the bank began its operations in July the same year.
Photo: Union Bank of Finland, Kuopio, 1897.
Nordea's Finnish family tree includes three other main banks in addition to the Union Bank of Finland: Kansallis-Osake-Pankki, Helsingin Osakepankki and Suomen Työväen Säästöpankki (STS-pankkiOpens new window).
In total, Nordea's family tree in Finland consists of 25 commercial banks. Finland's first savings bank is also part of Nordea's history as the successors of the branches of Savings Bank of Turku were merged with the Union Bank of Finland when it acquired Suomen Säästöpankki in 1993. Though this, Nordea's oldest roots date back to 1822 in Finland.
The Union Bank of Finland and Kansallis-Osake-Pankki merged in 1995. They formed a new bank called Merita, but another merger was just around the corner. In 1998, Merita and the Swedish Nordbanken merged establishing the MeritaNordbanken Group.
The new name Nordea was adopted in the late 2001. At the time, the Danish Unibank and the Norwegian Christiania Bank og Kreditkasse had also joined the Group.
In Scandinavia, Nordea's predecessor banks include some of the oldest banks in the Nordic countries, such as Sparekassen for Kjobenhavn og Omegn (Denmark, founded in 1820), Wermlandsbanken (Sweden, founded in 1832) and Christiania Kreditkasse (Norway, founded in 1848).
The bank museum's collection showcases the history and developments of commercial banking in Finland from the 1860s till this day. The collection of objects reveals the technical progress of the tools commonly used by businesses.
The historical objects at the museum comprise objects from the Finnish commercial banks which merged with Nordea's predecessor banks. The oldest objects date back to the founding days of the bank. The collection includes memorabilia from all of the predecessor banks across Finland. Some of the objects are work-related utilities and others business gifts given to the bank, but there are also some objects which were donated to the museum.
The museum is not systematically adding to the collection and only accepts objects used at the bank or gifted to the bank as donations if their background can be verified.
|Photo: Check protector.||Photo: Odhner, no 216.|
Nordea's old photos have been scanned and they are stored in the photo archive of Central Archives for Finnish Business Records (ELKA). The photo archive features photos from Nordea's predecessor banks from the late 1800s to the 1900s. There are approximately 8,500 photos in total.
You can browse the photos by visiting ELKA's websiteOpens new window.
Clic "Haku" at the top of the page to open the search page:
· Enter the bank's name (for example KOP, SYP or HOP) in the field called "Vapaateksti".
· You can also filter the search results by time and location.
· Tick the "Kuva" box and press the "Haku" button to start the search.
You can get more tips on how to use the search function by hovering over the question mark icons (in Finnish). The photos in the archive are for browsing only. You can request high-resolution photos and permission to use them from ELKA.
Other interesting links: