WL BANK has a long history. More than 130 years of combined experience. WL BANK was founded in 1877. It was established as a Pfandbriefbank under the name of “Westfälische Landschaft” by Westphalian farmers from the former farmers’ association.
Mortgage Bank in Westphalia and the Lower Rhine Region.
Operating on a non-profit basis, this bank was to grant favourable real estate loans to Westphalian farmers. The main centres of activity were in Westphalia-Lippe and the Lower Rhine region. Burghard Freiherr von Schorlemer-Alst, founder of the Westfälischer Bauernverein (Westphalian Farmers’ Association), played a key role in the foundation of the bank. He saw the foundation as absolutely necessary to avoid a credit famine. On 15 July 1877, the German emperor Kaiser Wilhelm I. confirmed the deed of foundation of the “Landschaft der Provinz Westfalen” on the island of Mainau.
Provider of Residential and Commercial Real Estate Financing.
For almost a century, WL BANK provided financing services exclusively to agricultural and forestry enterprises. In 1973, it expanded its range of services to include building loans for residential construction and commercial real estate financing. The Bank grew rapidly. As a result, its equity capital needed to be increased. However, the limits set by the legal form of a corporation under public law with a cooperative structure were too high for such an increase.
Public Limited Company and Cooperative Financial Group.
In 1987, the Bank was converted into a public limited company. WGZ BANK AG Westdeutsche Genossenschafts-Zentralbank became shareholder. Also the bank integrated into the Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken cooperative financial services group. Since 1995, WL BANK has been a member of the Federal Association of German Volksbanken and Raiffeisenbanken (Bundesverband der Deutschen Volksbanken und Raiffeisenbanken/BVR) and of its protection scheme. Since 1. August 2016 main shareholder is the DZ BANK AG Deutsche Zentral-Genossenschaftsbank AG.