The CEE History Project

The History of Savings Banks in Central and Eastern Europe and the History of Erste Group’s subsidiaries in the Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Ukraine.

ERSTE Foundation’s Programme Culture launched the CEE History Project with the aim of conducting initial research to trace the history of Erste Group’s central European subsidiaries and the development of savings banks in this region. Almost 200 years after the founding of Erste Österreichische Spar-Casse, this project returns to the roots of the savings bank idea in central Europe. Looking back is key to developing a corporate culture equipped for the future and based on core values which must be communicated both within the group and externally. Continually updating the corporate biography, documenting and preserving company output in the form of publications, promotional materials, in-house strategy papers and staff publications, and collecting items that are important to corporate history – all this creates an “institutional memory” which also reflects the economic and social developments of the past 200 years. The operations of a company such as Erste, which has strong roots in society and remains dedicated to these founding ideals, will always be influenced by its past, its origins and its social context. Its memory also reflects the experiences of the communities in which it operates and the individuals within these communities. This project is geared towards all institutions within and outside Erste Group which were founded on the idea of providing financial services to foster their customers’ economic and social development.