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Auction: 23009 - World Banknotes
Lot: 3

(x) The Mercantile Bank of Sydney, Australia, [Top Pop] specimen £50, Brisbane, 1st January 1885, serial number range 00001-01000, here, we present the extremely rare Brisbane £50 specimen from the Mercantile Bank of Sydney. Founded in 1869 by Alexander Campbell, a prominent businessman and politician, the Mercantile Bank of Sydney initially operated as a private bank, offering services such as deposit accounts, loans, and currency exchange. In 1873, it underwent a transformation; it became a joint-stock company, allowing the bank to raise capital from shareholders and significantly expand its operations. This was formalised through its incorporation via a private Act of the New South Wales Parliament, which granted the institution specific privileges and responsibilities. The bank's influence was established across New South Wales through a network of branches and agencies, playing a pivotal role in various regions by facilitating economic growth and supporting trade and investment. The range of financial services it offered proved indispensable for the flourishing commerce and industries of the era.

However, as the late 19th century brought changes to the landscape of Australian banking and mergers and acquisitions became commonplace. In 1891, the Mercantile Bank of Sydney was acquired by the Commercial Bank of Australia Limited. Although it ceased to exist as an independent entity, its footprint continued to shape the development of sector and many of its practices formed the bedrock of modern Australian banking.

The remarkable legacy of the Mercantile Bank of Sydney, which enjoyed only 22 years of existence, can be encapsulated in this extremely rare banknote. This exceptional artefact is a £50 specimen note, with a serial number range of 1000. Printed specifically for Brisbane on January 1st 1885, by B. W. & Co., London, this note holds the unique distinction of being the sole example ever graded by PMG. Astonishingly, it is the only one that we have been able to trace. This tangible piece of history provides a window into a bygone period of Australian commerce, and serves as a symbol of the bank's lasting impact on the nation's financial heritage
(Pick Unlisted, MVR2), in PMG holder 58EPQ Choice About Uncirculated, the sole example graded by PMG

Subject to 5% tax on Hammer Price in addition to 20% VAT on Buyer’s Premium.

£2,000 to £3,000

Starting price