Hatton National Bank

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Hatton National Bank PLC
Public Limited Company
Traded as CSEHNB.N0000
Industry Finance
Founded 1888[1]
Headquarters Colombo, Sri Lanka
Area served
Sri Lanka
Key people
Mr Rienzie Arseculeratne
Products Banking, financial and related services
Website www.hnb.net

Hatton National Bank PLC (commonly abbreviated as HNB) is a private bank in Sri Lanka with 251 branches and 563 ATMs.


In 1888 R. D. Banks and A. T. Atkin established a small, private bank called Hatton Bank to cater to the needs of investors and labourers in Ceylon’s tea plantations.[3] By 1933 it was a subsidiary of a European firm.[3]

In 1948, following the country's independence, Brown and Company, an engineering concern, bought out the interests of the original investors.[3]

In 1961, the Sri Lankan government forbade foreign banks to accept deposits from Ceylonese nationals.[3] This led to restructuring of the foreign bank presence in the Sri Lankan banking sector. In 1970 Hatton National Bank (HNB) was formed to take over Hatton Bank and the Kandy and Nuwara Eliya branches of Grindlays Bank.[3] Grindlays had inherited these branches from its merger with National Bank of India (NBI). NBI had established the branches in 1892. By giving up the two branches Grindlays earned the right to continue to operate its branch in Colombo, which NBI had established in 1881, serving corporate business. A share issue shortly thereafter changed the ownership structure of Hatton National Bank. After the share issue, Brown & Co and National & Grindlays owned 37% and 28% each respectively, while 35% of the company was in public ownership.[1] In 1974 HNB acquired Mercantile Bank of India’s branches in Pettah and Colombo, as well as a part interest in Mercantile (a subsidiary of HSBC since 1959, which retained its branch in Colombo).

More recently, in 1989 HNB acquired Emirates Bank International's Colombo branch as well as their Sri Lankan Foreign Currency Banking Unit. Seven years after that, HNB acquired Banque Indosuez’s Colombo branch.

In 2000 HNB opened a representative office in Karachi, Pakistan, and another in Chennai, India. Two years later, HNB acquired the Sri Lankan branches of Habib Bank A.G. Zurich. HNB planned to use them as the base for the bank's entry into Islamic banking.


  1. ^ a b Banking History- Hatton National Bank
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ a b c d e Peebles, Patrick (2015). Historical Dictionary of Sri Lanka. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 169. ISBN 9781442255852. 

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