Following the successful military struggle Turkey made it its essential principle to gain economic independence, a factor of great importance to gain full independence. Then in a short time span of 10-15 years after the proclamation of the Republic, all the essential institutions were established that would ensure the self-sufficiency of the country, also setting up the infrastructure that would ensure the sustainable financial independence based on a long-term planning. İşbank was founded in 1924 on the order of Atatürk as one of the first steps of this process to serve as one of the most important actors in the new economic landscape of the country. In line with this role, İşbank transformed the historical building in Ulus, Ankara, which served as its third Headquarters for long years, into a museum in an initiative to share with society its knowledge and experience it has accumulated up-to-now, a stock of great importance for the history of national economy of our country. This historical building in Ulus, one of the symbols of the capital city, was inaugurated as “İşbank Economic Independence Museum” to house the documents and reminiscences that account us the path of the economic independence and development process of our country.

The spatial design of the museum aims at presenting different contents in a certain concept integrity in line with the requirements of modern museum management. On the other hand, the style of intertwining historical aspects with modern elements carries the visitors from persistent past experiences to our days and future. In this sense, the materials in the collection of Isbank, which the bank has meticulously accumulated since its foundation in 1924 until today, cannot be regarded only as exhibition materials. The conscious perspective that the corporate history meet at the same plane with socio-economic memory is a factor that brings many different concepts, particularly the concept of “economic independence”, in harmony with each other. The building in Ulus, one of the architectural icons of the Republic, further welcomes its visitors with permanent and temporary exhibitions, art gallery and spaces intended for trainings and events. Entrance to the museum and all the activities, including guided tours and workshops, are free-of-charge.


The first section of the permanent exhibition is the one that gives an account of the ideal of ‘economic independence’, the principle that has been the principal paradigm after the foundation of the Republic, in a thematic and chronological order. In this exhibition after which the museum is named, the economic independence programme of the country is displayed on the basis of the mission which İşbank has assumed to this end. The exhibition held in the ground floor is presented under the following headings: the foundation process of İşbank presented in connection with the historical processes that led to the foundation of a national bank, the impetus that the bank gained in the first ten years, its investments in several industrial sectors, its affiliate companies operating in other sectors and the first branches abroad.

The first floor houses some historical rooms all preserved in their historical texture, namely the Blue Hall, the first hall which hosted the meetings of the Board of Directors and where Atatürk had his photo taken during his visit on 22 October 1929, the Grand Meeting Hall, a hall which was decorated in 1956 and which also hosts the Board Meetings of the Bank today, and the Office of Mr. Celal Bayar, the first General Manager of the Bank. Besides, another section also designed in this floor deals with the buildings that have housed the Headquarters of İşbank since its foundation.

The second floor of the museum houses an exhibition that displays the communication activities of the Bank since its foundation as well as its contributions to the social life of our country. İşbank has reached great masses of people through promotional activities since its foundation; the exhibition titled A Voyage on the Paths of Communication displays the promotional messages the Bank has communicated to people over the course of time. Besides print materials and hundreds of advertisement films that were displayed in solo or group presentations, the visitors can also view 60 original objects as well as media developed over the years, details about prominent people of the sector and applications that offer an insight into different time periods of technological use. in the other sections of the floor, items under several themes are displayed such as corporate social responsibility projects, the İşbank Kültür Yayınları, the publishing house of the bank which was founded by Hasan Ȃli Yücel in 1956 and which has since been making great contributions to the publishing community of our country, sponsorship activities in the field of education, projects carried out in cooperation with TEMA Foundation, archaeological excavations supported by the Bank and İş Sanat

Finally, the section with the Safe-Deposit Rooms, also called ‘’the Castle of the Customers’’ welcomes the visitors in the ground floor.


The museum also houses a book store of İşbank Kültür Yayınları.