1919: Stake in Banco Italiano (Bitaliano) acquired by Banca Commerciale Italiana (BCI).
1942: Name changed from Banco Italiano to Banco de Crédito del Perù.
1995: Stake in Banco de Lima acquired by Banque Française & Italienne pour l'Amérique du Sud (Sudameris).
1999: Banco Wiese Sudameris created through the merger of Banco de Lima with Banco Wiese Ltdo.
Banca Commerciale Italiana (BCI) operated in Peru through Banco Italiano (Bitaliano), a local bank in which it acquired a stake in 1919.
Bitaliano had begun operating on 9 April 1889 in Lima thanks to the initiative of a group of Italian capitalists and merchants who had settled in the country. In 1896 the bank founded the Compañìa de Seguros Italia, and in 1900 it set up an associated mortgage division. Bitaliano's principal activities revolved around agriculture, given that the Peruvian economy was primarily oriented toward that sector (notably, sugar and cotton production) as well as mining.
The crisis of the 1930s did not prevent Bitaliano from further expanding its network of branches and international relations and modernizing its accounting systems. By 1933 it had branches in Callao, Arequipa, Cuzco, Chiclayo, Chincha Alta, Ica, Mollendo, Tacna and Trujillo and several debt collection agencies; six years later, in 1939, it had a good thirty branches throughout the country.
When World War II began, the campaign against Italy and its institutions had serious negative repercussions for the bank, which changed its name to Banco de Crédito del Perù in 1942 in an attempt to pass as a local institution. At the time the bank's Economic Research Division (Sección Estudios Ecónomicos) was led by Antonello Gerbi, former director of BCI's own research office, whom Raffaele Mattioli had sent to Peru in November 1938 to escape Italy's discriminatory Racial Laws, which were directed mainly against the country's Jews.
In 1952 Banque Française & Italienne pour l'Amérique du Sud (Sudameris), too, arrived in Peru, acquiring shares in Bitaliano.
Since the restrictive - and retroactive - measures provided for in the 1969 Andean Pact on foreign investment meant that Sudameris had only a representative office in the country, in 1995 it acquired a stake in Banco de Lima, a bank founded in 1952 with Peruvian and French capital. In 1999 the latter merged with Banco Wiese Ltdo, the second most important financial institution in Brazil, to create Banco Wiese Sudameris. This bank would act as the Peru representative of Sudameris, BCI and subsequently Banca Intesa until being sold in 2006.