• Prehistory

    The first cooperatives were set up in Germany in the middle of the nineteenth century. The cooperative system’s pioneers include Hermann Schulze-Delitzsch and Friedrich Wilhelm Raiffeisen.

  • First Institutions

    In 1872, another promoter of the cooperative system, Wilhelm Haas, set up a consumer cooperative society for farmers in Friedberg in the state of Hesse. The goal was to secure price advantages for members purchasing agricultural inputs.

  • Reconstruction after 1945

    The Deutschlandkasse lost not only its headquarters, which were located in East Berlin, but also virtually all its banking assets, which consisted almost exclusively of practically worthless bonds issued by the Third Reich.

  • The cooperative financial network grows together

    In 1967 the Federal Supervisory Authority abolished the interest rate peg that had existed since the nineteen thirties. Competition with the saving banks and other banks increased, prompting central institutions and local cooperative banks to form larger units.

  • DZ BANK Fusion 2001

    The structure as a cooperative financial services network with a two-tier structure in Northern, Eastern and Southern Germany and a three-tier structure in Western and South-western Germany remained unchanged for a decade.

Cooperative values
Help for self-help; entrepreneurial responsibility in the region; standing together in difficult times: from the outset cooperative values helped foster a positive attitude among the public to the cooperative banks which still exists today. For around 150 years these values have contributed to the promotion of cooperative members’ economic interests – and today serve as a basis for future strategies in our cooperative financial network. Their history is described in detail in a recently published book.