From then on, the Ottoman Bank refocused on its Turkish commercial banking network, which comprised 83 branches and over 8,000 employees. It had returned to its roots.

In the 1970s, Paribas parent Compagnie Financière de Paris et des Pays-Bas bought the stock which the founding French banks still held in the Ottoman Bank and, by 1980 had become the sole major shareholder with close to 50 percent of the capital. Management of the bank became increasingly co-ordinated with that of the Paribas group, which appointed one of its managers as Managing Director of the Turkish bank.

1993 marked the end of the exceptional legal status of the Ottoman Bank. The Turkish government authorised the bank to change the status of its Turkish branch network to that of a subsidiary, which became the Osmanli Bankasi. Its parent, now no more than a pure holding company, established its headquarters in Luxembourg, where it took the name Compagnie Financière Ottomane.

Osmanli Bankasi was sold in 1996 to the Turkish group Dogus, which later on merged with it Garanti Bankasi. Paribas successfully launched a takeover bid for the 50 percent stake of Compagnie Financière Ottomane that it did not yet own.

Compagnie Financière Ottomane is today 97 percent owned by BNP Paribas, with the Republic of Turkey remaining the main minority shareholder. This remaining stake is one of the last vestiges of the Ottoman Bank s rich history.

OTTOMAN BANK PARIS HEAD OFFICE, 1960 S