Everything You Want To Know About Banks In Turkey

Everything You Want To Know About Banks In Turkey

Everything You Want To Know About Banks In Turkey


Turkish banks are well regulated and provide both individuals and businesses with a wide range of services. Akbank, GrantiBank, Isbank, and Ziraat Bank WebiCredit are the four largest banks in Turkey. More than 60% of the assets in the Turkish banking industry are held by these five banks.

General information about banks in Turkey

As they rely on a stable and safe financial system and offer a wide range of financial services that facilitate payments, money transfers, and investment in Turkey, Turkish banks are one of the fundamental foundations supporting investments in a variety of sectors in Turkey.

This robust system, on which Turkish banks rely, is built on strong and reliable foundations and makes use of cutting-edge technology to offer consumers integrated services and enable them to follow all banking operations by downloading bank-specific mobile applications from Google Play.

Customers can easily send and receive money, exchange currencies and conduct all transactions related to buying and selling through these official applications for Turkish banks. They can also open accounts for precious metals like gold, silver, and platinum, issue credit cards to foreigners, and exchange currencies.

Also, Turkish banks offer a variety of services, such as bill payment, connected to mortgages, credit loans, and foreign transfers (water, gas, electricity, internet, and mobile phones).

Top 9 Turkish banks

1- Ziraat Bankasi

Ahmed Shafif and Medhat Pasha founded the Turkish Ziraat Bank on November 20, 1863, with Sultan Abdul Hamid II's formal consent.

The Ziraat Bank started out as a modest charitable organization that offered sufficient assistance to the farmers, who at the time made up the bulk of the population and were in desperate need of loans to advance their agricultural enterprises due to their suffering and problems.

The founding of the Ziraat Bank was the best option since it insured that farmers would receive financial loans so they could buy the essential tools they needed to work in the agricultural industry at the time there was no institutional financial framework they could offer.

The State Ziraat Bank keeps growing its banking operations in accordance with the goals established for each distinct time stage by enlarging the range of services it offers to become a bank geared toward all social segments.

The Altinda neighborhood of Turkey's capital city, Ankara, is home to the Ziraat Bank's headquarters. Both inside and outside of Turkey, it has branches. It has 25,697 workers across all of its branches and the corporate office.

Ziraat Bank is distinguished by its extensive network of bank branches, which are dispersed throughout Turkey's provinces and neighborhoods, as well as its extensive network of ATM locations.

The banking system in this bank is distinguished by its flexibility and the simplicity with which all well-liked groups, including students, employees, Turkish and foreign investors, can open bank accounts.

With a significant increase in the number of bank accounts being opened at Ziraat Bank in recent years, this institution greatly increased its popularity by implementing a non-interest-based labor system.

2- Iş Bank

One of the biggest private banks offering banking and commercial services in Turkey is the Turkish Labor Bank, often known as Türkiye ş Bankas and abbreviated as A. Under Mustafa Kemal Ataturk's decree, it was founded in 1924 and was the first bank established during the Turkish Republic.

According to a list released by The Banker magazine, the Turkish Labor Bank has assets worth 926,6 billion Turkish Liras (TL) and is the 181st-largest bank in the world in terms of capital.

At the local and global levels, ş Bank offers integrated services in the area of bank accounts. It collaborates with other banks in Georgia, Russia, and Germany. On Istanbul's European side, in the Levent district, are the bank's corporate offices.

The Turkish Labor Bank owns 21 bank branches abroad, 1,195 branches across all of Turkey, 6,472 ATM centers dispersed across all provinces and neighborhoods, and more than 22,000 human cadres, according to data released last year.

3- Halk Bank

The People's Bank of Turkey, also known as Türkiye Halk Bankas, is an official government institution that was founded on June 8, 1933, and started operating on May 23, 1938, with the intention of offering small and medium-sized business owners and industrialists simple and affordable loans.

With a volume of banking assets of 128,480 million, Halk Bank is one of the biggest banks in the world and currently holds the 159th-place position globally in terms of total assets.

4- Vakif Bank

The second largest bank in Turkey by assets is the Turkish Endowment Bank, which was founded on January 11, 1954, in collaboration with other Turkish businesses, with a capital of 50 million TL.

This bank was primarily founded to make the best use of the resources of the banking institution in accordance with the requirements of economic development and to contribute to the nation's savings through a management approach based on the wise use of contemporary banking technologies.

Vakif Bank offers services on a local and global scale, especially considering that it has numerous branches in numerous Turkish states as well as in different regions of the world like New York, Erbil, Bahrain, Austria, Germany, and Northern Cyprus.

5- Garanti BBVA

On June 21, 1946, the Social Security Bank, often known as Garanti BBVA in Turkey, was founded in Ankara. With $107 billion in combined assets, it is Turkey's second-largest private bank.

Garanti Bank engages in all facets of banking, including dealings with commercial enterprises, SMBs, payment systems, and financial services for both local and international investments.

The Social Security Bank has 8 foreign branches, including 7 in Cyprus, 1 in Malta, and 884 in Turkey, according to data released in 2020. This brings the total number of Social Security Bank offices overseas to 8.

With a staff of 18,656 personnel and 5,309 cash withdrawal locations, it also has representative offices in Düsseldorf and Shanghai and offers exceptional services to all 18.7 million customers.

6- Yapi Kredi Bank

Kazim Taşkent founded the first private bank, Yapi Kredi Bank, in Istanbul in 1944. With total assets of 780,8 billion TL in 2021, it is the third largest private bank in Turkey. It has 804 branches around the country and a workforce of 15,000 employees.

7- Deniz Bank

In May 2018, Sberbank, a Russian oligarch, sold Deniz Bank to the National Bank of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Deniz Bank has two centers outside of Turkey, specifically in Germany and Austria, in addition to its centers and branches in Turkey, where it has a 3.7% market share.

8- Iktisat Bank

The Turkish Economic Bank, one of the top businesses among the local, privately owned banks functioning in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, was founded in 1990 by Turkish Cypriot businesspeople with the intention of engaging in the retail banking and commercial sectors.

Iktisat Bank works with importers in a range of industries (food, cars, electronics, spare parts), as well as firms engaged in contracting, manufacturing, small and medium-sized businesses, and trading.

Since the beginning of the 2000s, the Bank has made very significant investments in technology infrastructure, giving work on issues related to retail banking a high priority.

9- Ak Bank

With the intention of supporting cotton farmers in the area, a group of merchants founded the private bank Akbank in Adana in January 1948. Today, with assets of around $94 billion, Akbank is one of the biggest banks in Turkey.

According to Brand Finance's research into the "500 Most Valuable Banking Brands in the World," Akbank was crowned the "Most Valuable Bank Brand in Turkey" for the sixth time in a row. Because of its impressive commercial value, Akbank was placed 94th out of 500 banks globally.

On July 14, 1950, the Sirkeci neighborhood in Istanbul saw the opening of the first Akbank branch, and in 1954 the general manager of the bank relocated there as well.

In 1963, AK Bank automated every banking transaction, and Frankfurt, Germany, became the institution's first overseas representative office.

Arab and Islamic banks in Turkey

Turkish Islamic banks rely on a robust and interest-free financial infrastructure, the most significant of which are:

1- Kuveyt Turk

Based on the guidelines provided by Cabinet Decision No. 831/7506, dated 16/12/1983, Kuveyt Turk Bank was founded in 1989 as a private financial organization to do banking activity.

Until they were brought under the purview of the Banking Act in 1999, the operations of private financial institutions were governed by a Cabinet decision and statements made by the Central Bank and the Undersecretary of the Treasury.

The Kuwait Finance Corporation receives 62% of the capital of Kuveyt Türk Bank, followed by the Kuwait State Social Security Corporation with 9%, the Islamic Development Bank with 9%, the General Directorate of Foundations with 18%, and other partners with 2%.

It is noteworthy that Kuwait Finance Corporation, with a capital stake of 62%, is Kuwait Turkish Bank's largest shareholder. Kuwait Turkish Bank is a sizable financial institution in Kuwait that is among the best interest-free financial institutions in the world and owns billions of dollars in assets as well as modern banking services.

Since its founding, Kuveyt Turk Bank has embraced the idea of interest-free banking, conducted investment research, offered savers and businesspeople a cutting-edge, dependable, high-quality, and quick service, and required employees to undergo ongoing training to improve the quality of services to customers.

The top bank in Turkey for foreigners is Kuveyt Türk Bank. It strives to use every type of cutting-edge technology tool in order to facilitate client reviews and expedite its banking business. It takes pride in its capacity to offer investors and savers quick and high-quality service.

2- AlBaraka Bank

One of the first Islamic participatory banks to be formed in Turkey is AlBaraka Turkish Bank, which was founded by the Bahraini AlBaraka Group. Under the name AlBaraka Turkish Private Finance Company, the bank began offering banking and investing services in the Umraniye neighborhood of Istanbul, Asia, in 1985. This was done in compliance with Banking Law No. 5411.

AlBaraka Banking Group and the Islamic Development Bank make up 66.51% of the foreign investment entities that hold AlBaraka Turkish Bank, while local investors own 12.91% and the IPO owns 20.57%.

AlBaraka Bank works as an official agent for some public and private agencies, which provide social security services, private pension plans, and other associated services, in addition to the banking and banking services it offers to thousands of customers inside and outside of Turkey.

Over 3,899 people are employed by AlBaraka Turkish Bank, which has 236 branches spread out throughout Turkey in addition to two branches in Erbil and Baghdad.

AlBaraka Banking Group, an investment organization that offers financial and financial services in the Gulf, Middle East, and North Africa regions, is the biggest official partner of AlBaraka Bank of Turkey.

With approximately 1,000 banks in 80 nations worldwide, AlBaraka Turk Bank also offers foreign trade services (import, export, and foreign exchange).

3- QNB Bank

Hosni Ozyegan founded the Qatari Turkish Bank on October 26, 1987, with a $4 million capital and its offices in Sisli, one of European Istanbul's most famous neighborhoods. It is one of the most well-known Turkish banks associated with the Qatari QNB Group.

Fiba Holding served as the primary backer of the Qatari Turkish Bank, which was afterwards acquired by the National Bank of Greece and later sold to the Qatari QNB Group for €2.7 billion in June 2016.

QNB Finansfaktoring, which began operations on October 5, 2009, and is one of the most recent businesses in the globalization industry, is one of the most notable partners in Qatar Turkish Bank.

With 515 branches and 11,882 workers worldwide, Qatari Turkish Bank is one of the biggest Arab banks in Turkey and one of the top financial organizations in the Middle East and Africa. It serves over 1.5 million customers in Turkey and 31 other countries with the best banking services.

Are there online banks in Turkey? What are the most famous?

Online banks that offer a limited range of banking services, in addition to the official Turkish banks, include:

1- Papara Turkish Online Bank

Papara e-Bank is a financial technology company that aims to reinvent the banking experience by providing innovative alternatives to conventional financial applications that are both cost-effective and user-friendly.

With a license it received from the Agency for Banking Regulation and Supervision in April of 2016, Papara Online Bank is one of the banks that has been offering restricted banking services in Turkey since that time. By the end of its fourth year, the Papara Bank staff had grown to 200 employees, who serve millions of users.

The electronic bank Papara, which is a member of MasterCard, Visa, and the Interbank Card Center, has introduced a prepaid card in Turkey for the first time that carries the MasterCard logo and is not authorized by any of the official banks.

The Papara website provides users with a variety of advantages, such as receiving discounts when making purchases from specific websites, receiving discounts when subscribing to specific packages, such as movie-watching sites, and receiving offers on YouTube promotion that can be up to 50% off in value.

2- Payoneer

Pioneer Bank, a well-known American platform for digital transfers, is one of the electronic banks that offers banking services. You can open an account linked to this bank from any location in the globe, and you'll receive a prepaid card at no cost at your front door.

For e-commerce activities around the world, Payoneer Bank offers integrated electronic financial services. These services include online money receipt, client payment requests, balance withdrawals via bank transfers or ATMs, and supplier payments.

3- Tosla e-Bank

Tosla e-bank, which is connected to Akbank in Turkey, creates a distinctive shopping experience by facilitating free transactions like sending and receiving money and making payments. In addition, it gives customers an edge over their preferred brands thanks to its opportunity-filled campaigns.

How to open a bank account in Turkey online?

You must submit some personal information and upload some papers pertaining to your identity and residency permit when you download the electronic bank app from the Google Play store or access the official website online.

Documents required to open a bank account in Turkey

You must provide some personal data and upload identification and residency permit-related papers when you download the electronic bank app from the Google Play store or access the official website online.

Conditions for opening a bank account in Turkey

Electronic To open a bank account with a Turkish bank, there are no additional requirements; however, you must agree to the formal requirements and abide by all Turkish laws and regulations.

The most important Turkish banks for investment and development

Turkish banks with a focus on investment and development are concerned with providing the required financial support through loans in a variety of investment areas. Among the most significant development and investment banks are:

  • Türk Eximbank
  • Türkiye Sınai Kalkınma Bankası 
  • İller Bankası 
  • Aktif Yatırım Bankası 
  • İstanbul Takasbank

To draw foreign capital to Turkey and boost the efficiency of industrial projects, Turkish banks for investment and development offer incentive loans to those looking to participate in the industrial sector.


In conclusion, the banks in Turkey offer a wide range of financial products and services to meet the needs of individuals and businesses alike. With a strong regulatory framework and a robust banking sector, Turkey's banks are well-positioned to support the country's economic growth and development. Whether you are looking for traditional banking services or innovative digital solutions, the banks in Turkey have much to offer.

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