The Anglo-Egyptian Bank was established in 1864 at Alexandria. In 1920, it was acquired by Barclays Bank Ltd, and combined in 1925 with the Colonial Bank and the National Bank of South Africa to form Barclays Bank (Dominion, Colonial & Overseas). The creation of DCO saw Barclays take over 14 offices in Egypt. These offices were controlled by a local board, chaired by R.H. Foa, a previous chairman from the Anglo-Egyptian Bank. The local board controlled branches not only in Egypt, but also Palestine (until 1934), Gaza (until 1950) and the Sudan (until 1953). At this time, the Egyptian economy was mainly based upon the cotton trade, enabling Barclays to open a cotton office in Alexandria in 1933.
Following the Suez crisis in 1956, Barclays' business within Egypt (44 offices, of which 17 were full branches) was seized by the government and passed to the Bank of Alexandria. In 1975, Barclays returned to Egypt, establishing Cairo Barclays International Bank SAE (CBIC) as an offshore bank with Banque du Caire, with the aim to provide investment and banking operations in Egypt and other counties within the region, concentrating on wholesale and merchant banking for corporate clients. In 1983, CBIC achieved full joint venture status, enabling it to trade in Egyptian currency and provide a full banking service. Barclays Bank International had to surrender a 1% holding in CBIC to Banque du Caire, resulting in a renamed Banque du Caire Barclays International. A new head office and Cairo branch building was opened the following year. By 1992, BCBI had three branches which dealt with corporate and personal business.
Following changes to Egyptian banking laws, which enabled foreign banks to acquire majority control in holdings, in 1999 Barclays was able to increase its holding to 60% and the company was renamed Cairo Barclays Bank. In 2004, Barclays announced the acquisition of the remaining 40% from Banque du Caire, and the business was renamed Barclays Bank Egypt. Barclays Bank Egypt opened its third branch in Alexandra, and established its first Barclaycard campaign within the country in 2005. In 2006, a partnership between Barclays Egypt and Commercial Life Insurance was announced, and offers Bancassurance products in the country. In 2007, the 15th retail branch was opened in 10 Ramadan City, and a new retail banking system, Flexcube, was launched in 2008. Barclays has supported or undertaken a number of social and community projects in Egypt in recent years. In 2007 Barclays Egypt signed a memorandum of understanding with the Cairo Governorate and the Association for the Protection of the Environment, to finance a project entitled ‘Towards a Better Environment’, designed to revitalise areas around Barclays branches in Cairo. From 2008 onwards Barclays worked with children’s agency UNICEF in a number of ways as part of the Building Young Futures project, for example tackling the problem of youth unemployment, priority being given to girls and those living in rural areas and impoverished towns. For several years Egypt has been one of several countries where Barclays colleagues have volunteered to provide disadvantaged people with food over the Ramadan period. In 2009 Barclays Egypt colleagues at Port Said branch officially launched a new computer centre for a charity for orphaned children. In 2010 Barclays Egypt, in partnership with children’s organisation UNICEF, organised an event to help young people develop their work and project management skills, as part of Barclays’ Building Young Futures partnership. Also In 2010 the bank gave over £11,000 to the Egyptian Red Crescent Society, to support those affected by severe flooding in the country. In 2011Barclays Egypt won a business recovery award in recognition of the efforts to maintain business continuity during the country's period of civil and political unrest. Barclays teams in Egypt supported an isolated community to generate a sustainable income, following a programme to plant 350 palm and olive trees. In 2013 it was announced that Barclays’ African businesses would be incorporated in a new business grouping, Barclays Africa Group, with Barclays holding a 62.3% stake in the new company. In accordance with its newly stated strategy of disposing of non-core businesses, in October 2016 Barclays announced completion of the sale of Barclays Bank Egypt to Attijariwafa Bank SA.