Bhutan National Bank, initially known as Unit Trust of Bhutan (UTB), was established on July 25th, 1980. It began with an initial funding of Nu. 2.5 million provided by the Royal Insurance Corporation of Bhutan. The purpose of UTB, functioning as a subsidiary of RICB, was to promote saving habits among the general public and direct resources towards productive sectors.
On January 1st, 1992, the royal government granted UTB the status of an independent financial institution. In its first year, the trust recorded a modest profit of Nu. 9618.86. Recognizing the growing economy and the presence of only one bank in the kingdom by 1995, UTB underwent a transformation into a commercial bank with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank.
Bhutan National Bank In July 1996, the bank made its equity available to the public, resulting in its transformation into a widely owned financial institution, with a 28.58% ownership held by the general public. Just five months later, in December, the entire bank underwent computerization with the introduction of banking software called Micro banker.
In 1997, the Royal Government divested 40 percent of its equity to the Asian Development Bank and Citibank, making Bhutan National Bank the only institution in the country with foreign interests. It was also in the same year that Bhutan National Bank Limited was officially inaugurated for business.
To encourage private sector participation and foster competition, dynamism, and professionalism, the Royal Government of Bhutan reduced its nominees to the board in 2001.
Flexcube replaced the banking software in 2003.The year 2004 marked the launch of the country’s first-ever ATM services by Bhutan National Bank Limited, providing convenience to its customers. These ATMs were introduced in Thimphu and Phuentsholing. Three years later, the bank introduced a debit point-of-sale terminal, facilitating effortless shopping for individuals with debit cards in Bhutan.
In April 2011, recurring deposit and rupee-denominated prepaid cards were introduced, and in December 2011, the Bhutan Financial Switch was inaugurated by the Honorable Prime Minister.
Bhutan National Bank Limited has often been at the forefront of introducing new services to enhance processes and improve customer satisfaction. With the continued support of the public and clients, the bank aspires to become the leading financial institution in the country and the world