Bank Rakyat

Bank Rakyat also known as Bank Kerjasama Rakyat Malaysia Berhad is an Islamic cooperative bank that was established on 28th of September 1954 under the Cooperative Ordinance of 1948 which also was known as the Cooperative Societies Act 1993 following the growth of the cooperative movement that was happening in Peninsular Malaysia. In order to facilitate the cooperative movement’s expansion, the co-operatives set up their own respective union banks to give financial needs to their members.

Therefore, on 28th of September 1954, 11 of these respective union banks agreed to merge and form Bank Agong which was also known as Apex Bank that serves as the foundation of Bank Rakyat. The full name of Bank Agong was Bank Agong Kampong Bekerjasama-sama Persekutuan Tanah Melayu Dengan Tanggongan Berhad and the bank was registered under the act of Cooperative Ordinance 1948. The bank was first based in Bukit Mertajam before it was being moved to Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia in 1964. Over at Kuala Lumpur, the bank has its name changed to Bank Kerjasama Berhad and subsequently extended its memberships not only to cooperative members but also to individuals in 1967. The by-laws also helped the bank to set up different subsidiary companies and to open different branches to serve its members and other customers.

On 6th of January 1973, Bank Kerjasama Berhad was changed to Bank Rakyat or Bank Kerjasama Rakyat Malaysia Berhad. Bank Rakyat was then governed by the law and Bank Kerjasama Rakyat Berhad Act 1978 (Special Provision 202) that allows the bank to provide financing to non-members and to broaden its scope of activities. On 8th of May 1993, Bank Rakyat chose to do a complete transformation from their conventional banking system to a banking system that was based on Syariah principles and making it Syariah compliant. As a result of being a full-fledged Islamic Cooperative bank after being able to successfully convert its 1.1% conventional assets balance in order to comply with Syariah guidelines, Bank Rakyat has been recording encouraging profits year after year and for the financial year ending 31st of December 2015, Bank Rakyat has recorded a pre-tax and pre-tax profit of as much as RM2.01 billion. Bank Rakyat was also able to set up branches in Sarawak and Sabah in 1994 after the review of the Cooperative Act that happened in 1993.

Bank Rakyat is an entity controlled by the Ministry of Land and Co-operative Development and Consumerism since 2004. Previously, Bank Rakyat was controlled by the Ministry of Land and Co-operative Development and Ministry of Finance from 1989 but the control was given to Central Bank of Malaysia under the Development of Financial Institution Act in 2002.

Today, Bank Rakyat continues to expand their product range and customer facilities that are innovative and varied and the products and facilities include commercial banking, consumer banking, investments, savings and financial planning products to satisfy the modern day needs and demands of a wide spectrum of customers. The bank has also received several recognitions and accolades as a major industry player and known as an outstanding cooperative organization both locally and internationally.

To date, Bank Rakyat has 148 branches with over more than 960 automated teller machines (ATMs) and cash deposit machines that offer Islamic banking facilities to their customers. Bank Rakyat also operates a pawnshop based on Islamic principles known as Ar-Rahnu X’change. There is a total of 95 Ar-Rahnu X’change outlets in Malaysia today. The key people on the board of Directors for Bank Rakyat are General Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Abdul Aziz Haji Zainal as the Chairman, Dato’ Mustafha Hj. Abd. Razak as the Managing Director and President and Dato’ Setia Haji Mohd. Tamyes Abd. Wahid is the Syariah Committee’s Chairman. The current headquarters of Bank Rakyat is based at Menara Kembar Bank Rakyat situated along Jalan Rakyat in Kuala Lumpur.