A long and wonderful history of entrepreneurs
Societe Generale is celebrating its 150th anniversary. Our history is not just about the past, it is also about what we are today and what we want to be in the future.
It's a story that goes to the roots of our identity: our founders' entrepreneurial spirit, innovation spirit and team spirit are what drive us to continue their journey with the same entrepreneurial energy.
Our history is first and foremost a great journey of entrepreneurs serving other entrepreneurs. Founded by a group of industrialists and financiers driven by the ideals of progress, Societe Generale's mission has always been "fostering business and industrial growth."
Over the course of history, Societe Generale has shown it can stay true to its values while continually reinventing itself for the changing needs of its time. This is what we are focusing on for our 150th anniversary. By tracing our roots, we look to the future with the humility of those who have made it through the hard times and the optimism of those who will always be guided by entrepreneurial spirit, making Societe Generale the bank of the 21st century.
The Nice heist, 1976: Spaggiari and the "sewer gang"
Summer 1976. A criminal gang breaks into the vault at the Nice branch via underground tunnels. A look at a true story which triggered the proactive, comprehensive and responsive security strategy implemented by Societe Generale.
Setting out to conquer rail
Driven by ideals of progress, Societe Generale embarked very early on in the financing of railway infrastructures, at a time when the industrial revolution was at its height. A deliberate policy that enabled it to attach its name to the execution of major projects of public interest, work for the development of the economy and extend international trade relations.
Pioneer in online banking
For the last thirty years, Societe Generale has used the most efficient technological tools to improve its relationship with its customers. From the Minitel to the Web 2.0, it has always shown an ability to make full use the resources provided by micro-computing and communication networks, thus putting its promise of innovation and proximity into practice.
Straight for the goal! The incredible journey of CASG
The Societe Generale Athletics Club (CASG) is a two-time winner of the Coupe de France football championship. It is the only corporate sporting association to have won the competition.
Frédéric Donet: the secret of "Laflèche"
May 1944. France is under German occupation. Lieutenant-Colonel Donet, responsible for Societe Generale's "Passive defence" programme, joins the French resistance. His clandestine activities include, among others, protecting the secret of the Allied landing in Normandy.
Societe Generale advertising posters, 1864 / 2014
© Anonymous / Imp. Chaix. Societe Generale's Historical Archives
Since it was founded, Societe Generale has always contributed to the development of railways, in line with the desires of its founders who were leading industrialists.
© G. Lavallière / Studio Bruno Hulin. IGT Paris. Societe Generale's Historical Archives
When data communications technology began to develop, the bank innovated by offering its customers home banking services. Help using its new tools was provided through the organisation of open days. The Minitel (a French Videotex online service) was a forerunner of the potential services subsequently available via internet.
For more information
Created in 2005, the Historical Mission works to perpetuate and enhance the Group’s heritage.