The Story of Barings

  • Facts

    • Financing the modern world

      Barings was established as a merchant house in 1762. By the mid 19th century they were helping to finance new industries, methods of transport and communications that would transform the world.

    • The Baring Archive

      Barings plc was acquired by the Dutch bank ING in 1995. In 2008 ING loaned the archive to The Baring Archive Limited, a charitable company established by ING to manage the collections and develop their use as an educational resource.

The 6th Great Power

“There are six great powers in Europe, England, France, Prussia, Austria, Russia and Baring Brothers.”

Duc de Richelieu, 1818

The History of Barings

    • Timeline
      Follow the bank from its origins in 1762 through to its insolvency and acquisition by ING in 1995.

    • Barings' People
      Find out more about the Baring family and other people were also welcomed into the firm as partners.

    • All about Barings
      Discover more about the origins of the firm, how the business developed and what happened to the archive post 1995.

Banking in the 19th Century?

    • What did a merchant bank do?
      The history of Barings is also the history of merchant banking in Britain. Different aspects of finance became more important at different times. This section looks at some of the functions of merchant banks. 


Try Your Hand at Investment

Now you have found out what Barings did, why
not try your own hand at being a merchant
banker and see how well you would do?

In the 'Would You Invest' section of this site
you have a unique opportunity to travel
through time and invest in some amazing

Would YOU have made your fortune?