Barclays Bank is an international financial institution with a wide range of offerings, including deposit accounts, credit cards and investment products. Barclays has offices in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas, employing 140,000 people across more than 50 countries.
Barclays offers personal banking products in 20 countries today. In the U.S., Barclays now offers savings accounts and certificates of deposit (CDs) in addition to its services in wealth management, corporate banking and credit cards.
Barclays' history in banking goes back more than 300 years. John Freame and Thomas Gould founded the business in 1690 in London. The company grew steadily throughout the 20th century, acquiring numerous other financial companies and expanding its reach beyond the United Kingdom.
Barclays was an early innovator in the credit card market, launching the UK's first credit card in 1966. Barclays also pioneered the ATM machine, opening the world's first such offering in 1967 at its Enfield, England branch. Other significant firsts for the company include starting the first web page for a financial institution in 1995, and being the first UK credit card to use TV advertising in 1972.
Barclays' growth has included aggressive international expansion. Between 1969 and 2008, Barclays opened new offices in Japan, China, India, Africa and Pakistan. Its world headquarters, however, remain in London.
Barclays launched an online savings account and CDs geared toward U.S. consumers in 2012. Barclays promised to deliver market-leading rates with these new FDIC-insured accounts. In addition, the accounts also offer the ability to deposit checks via smartphone, as well as online transfer options to move money to and from other U.S. financial institutions.
The accounts can be opened and accessed online around the clock, and there is no monthly maintenance fee. Barclays also requires no minimum balance in these accounts, and offers CD terms varying from three months to five years.
Barclays' North American banking headquarters are in Wilmington, Delaware.