Kleinwort, Benson: The History of Two Families in Banking
Kleinwort Benson is one of the most distinguished international investment banks in the City of London, becoming part of the Dresdner Bank Group in 1995. This is the story of how two families, the Kleinworts and the Bensons, emerged from medieval beginnings in Holstein and the Lake District to seek their fortunes in Hamburg, Cuba, and Liverpool, before arriving in the 1850s in London. There they founded two very different merchant banks, which merged in 1961 to create Kleinwort Benson Lonsdale, later Kleinwort Benson Group. The Kleinwort Benson story mirrors both the spectacular growth of English capital and its often turbulent side-effects. It shows how the two families survived the collapse of the Benson bank in 1875, the freezing of Kleinwort assets and business by the European financial crisis of 1931, and two World Wars, and how they established their banks as powerful City players in the postwar period. Their story is as much a human drama as a financial history. Brimming with generations of Kleinworts, Bensons, and the families with whom they married and formed partnerships, the book evokes their feuds and friendships, their successes and failures, set against the background of more than two hundred years of social and business history.
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The Expansion of Kleinworts
The Rebuilding of Bensons
Reversal and Recovery
Heirs of the Establishment
Kleinworts and the Urge to Merge
Bensons and a Complementary Union
A Modem Merchant Bank 19611971
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