PostFinance’s history

Take a journey back in time with us and experience PostFinance’s 100-year history. It begins with the launch of the “post cheque and giro service”.

2017 – New postfinance.ch website

PostFinance fundamentally reorganizes its e-banking system at the end of 2014, and the entire website follows in spring 2017. A new emotional customer experience on desktop and mobile devices makes it easier for customers to enter into dialogue with PostFinance.

2015 – PostFinance classified as a systemically important bank

Due to PostFinance’s significant status in domestic deposit services and its strong position in payment transactions in Switzerland, PostFinance Ltd as a financial group is declared a systemically important bank by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA). 

2014 – TWINT

TWINT is founded as a PostFinance subsidiary in summer 2014. Switzerland’s first integrated payment and shopping app gets off to a successful start and merges with Paymit in 2016. The aim remains the same: a standardized, smart payment solution for digital payment transactions in Switzerland. 

2014 – New e-finance

E-finance has a completely new design. Information is arranged in clear tiles, making navigation easier. Users can adapt e-finance to their needs quickly and easily. 

2013 – New headquarters in Berne

The 13-storey Mingerstrasse complex offers workspaces for 850 employees. At 55 metres high and with gross floor space of 15,000 m2, it is one of Berne’s tallest buildings.

2013 – PostFinance Ltd

Since June 2013, PostFinance has been a private limited company under private law and a subsidiary of Swiss Post Ltd. PostFinance Ltd is regulated by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) and has been granted a licence in accordance with the Banking Act. The PostFinance Ltd Board of Directors is the highest official body within PostFinance Ltd.

2011 – FINMA supervision

Swiss Post – and along with it PostFinance – receives directly subordinated financial intermediary (DSFI) status. This means PostFinance is subject to full supervision by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) in compliance with the provisions of the Anti Money Laundering Act even before PostFinance is converted into a private limited company.

2010 – Free iPhone app

PostFinance is the first financial institution to offer a free app with a payment function for iPhones. It allows users to find the closest Postomats, PostFinance branches and post offices, and displays the latest stock market information. 

2003 – PostFinance turns into a retail financial institution

Together with UBS AG, PostFinance launches yellow mortgages and the yellow retirement savings account 3a. This marks PostFinance’s transformation into a fully-fledged retail financial institution. Since summer 2008, PostFinance has also offered additional mortgages in cooperation with Münchener Hypothekenbank eG.

2001 – yellowtrade

With yellowtrade, today called e-trading, PostFinance enters the world of Internet-based securities trading. 

2000 – The first advice centers

The first PostFinance advice centers are opened in Lausanne, Basel and Zurich.

1999 – Launch of the Deposito account

PostFinance launches a safe, flexible investment account with the Deposito account. It is followed by the e-Deposito account in 2000. And in 2003, the Deposito account for business customers is introduced.

1998 – Postal reform

The 1998 postal reform was designed to ensure and improve the provision of good, inexpensive postal and payment transaction services for the population and economy throughout Switzerland. For Swiss Post, the reform involved changes at both market and company level. 

Under the reform, PostFinance had a statutory obligation to achieve returns consistent with the market when investing customer deposits and to guarantee the security of the investments. The abolition of the limit on interest provided the basis for a market standard for paying interest on customer deposits in postal and Deposito accounts.

1998 – Introduction of yellownet

yellownet marks the start of the e-finance era. This service sees PostFinance rise to become the undisputed number one in e-banking. By 2009, e-finance has surpassed one million registered users. 

1997 – “Postsoleil”: the first funds

The three yellow funds are launched in collaboration with Swiss Bank Corporation (now UBS). Today, PostFinance has seven of its own funds: Funds 1-5, as well as Fonds Global and Suisse. Since 2002, PostFinance has also offered a selection of investment funds from other providers.

1992 – Launch of Postcard Eurocard

The Postcard Eurocard credit card is launched. It is later marketed as Postcard VISA Card in cooperation with Cornèr Bank. Today these services are called PostFinance MasterCard and PostFinance VISA Card.

1991 – The go-ahead for Postcard

Postcard follows on from the POSTOMAT PLUS card and the blue, guaranteed Postcheque. Launched in 1984, it allows cash withdrawals from post offices in Europe and Japan. The POSTOMAT PLUS Card was put into service for the first time at Shoppyland Schönbühl, Berne, in 1988. With its magnetic strip and chip, it made cashless payments considerably easier.

1988 – Electronic payments become a reality

Telegiro PTT is launched. A precursor to yellownet, this service enables electronic payments via Videotex.

1978 – Introduction of Postomats

The first Postomats are introduced even before banks had ATMs. Postomat Cards are introduced for cash withdrawals.

1971 – The first inpayment slip

The introduction of the inpayment slip with reference number (VISR) was a pioneering achievement. It has shaped paper-based payment transactions in Switzerland up to the present day and anchored PostFinance’s position in the market. This service has been called ISR since 1996. 

1950 – The end of interest on postal cheque credit balances

In the wake of the 1930s economic crisis, interest rates drop to very low levels. At the end of 1949, the interest earned was only 0.2%, a meaningless amount for many account holders. Since it still involved work to calculate, the interest on postal cheque credit balances was discontinued. 

1920 – First international postal transfer agreement

The agreement is reached at the UPU Congress in Madrid. At the same time, Swiss Post signs postal order agreements with the biggest European countries.

1906 ­ Introduction of payment transactions

The dense post office network is the natural solution for payment transactions. There are already about 3,000 access points across Switzerland. Carl Koechlin opens the first post cheque account at the post cheque office in Basel.

1900 – The first “post cheque and giro service”

Private and cantonal banks are no longer able to provide enough cash to meet the needs of the Swiss economy. To remedy this problem, Carl Koechlin, a Basel member of the National Council and colonel, along with five co-signatories submit a motion. This is the cornerstone for the introduction of a “post cheque and giro service”.