The idea of a truly Indian bank was first conceived of by Mr. G.D Birla, the doyen of Indian Industrial renaissance, after the historic "Quit India" movement in 1942. Soon this nascent idea came into reality and, on the 6th of January 1943, The United Commercial Bank Ltd. was born with its Registered and Head Office at Kolkata. The very first Board of Directors was represented by eminent personalities of the country drawn from all walks of life, and this all-India character of the Bank has been assiduously maintained till date not only in the composition of its Board but also in the geographical spread of its more than 3000 in the country as well as in its overseas centres in Singapore and Hong Kong.
Having traversed periods of expansion and consolidation, the Bank was nationalized by the Government of India on the 19th July 1969 whereupon 100 per cent ownership was taken over by the government in UNITED COMMERCIAL BANK. This historic event brought about a sea-change in the entire fabric of the bank's thinking and activities, commensurate with the government's socio-political approach of mass banking as against class banking hitherto practised. The Bank had gone for Rs.200 crore of IPO during the year 2003-04 and is now a listed Company. As on 31.03.2012 Government Share-holding of the Bank was 65.19 per cent. Branch expansion started at a fast pace, particularly in rural areas, and the bank achieved several unique distinctions in Priority Sector lending and other social uplift activities. To keep pace with the developing scenario and expansion of business, the Bank undertook an exercise in organizational restructuring in the year 1972. This resulted into more functional specialization, decentralization of administration and emphasis on development of personnel skill and attitude. Side by side, whole hearted commitment into the government's poverty alleviation programmes continued and the convenorship of State Level Bankers' Committee (SLBC) was entrusted on the Bank for Odisha and Himachal Pradesh in 1983.
The year 1985 opened a new chapter for the Bank as the name of the Bank changed to UCO BANK by an Act of Parliament. The customer friendly and socially committed character, however, remained even with this change in name which has, over the years, been regarded as one of the well-known and vibrant banks in the country. Today, with all its inner strengths, UCO Bank has come a long way to symbolize friendliness for customers and efficiency in its banking business. Truly, UCO Bank HONOURS YOUR TRUST.