Tsentrobank (full name: Центральний кооперативний банк; Tsentralnyi kooperatyvnyi bank [Central Co-operative Bank]). The main financial institution and organizational center for all Ukrainian co-operatives in Galicia. It was established in Lviv in 1898 by Kost Levytsky, Stepan Fedak, and Yaroslav Kulachkovsky. It was known at first as the Provincial Credit Union; its purpose was to organize credit unions and other co-operatives, accept deposits from and grant credit to the individual co-operatives, and oversee the development of the entire co-operative movement in Galicia. The first director, Levytsky, was succeeded by Kost Pankivsky, Hryhorii Vretsona, and Omelian Saievych. The board of directors was chaired by H. Kuzma. Initially the union represented 17 credit and 2 trade co-operatives. By 1913 it had 906 members, including 427 co-operatives. Its assets reached 1.1 million kronen, its outstanding loans 4.3 million kronen, and its turnover 106 million kronen. In 1904 its organizational responsibilities for the co-operative movement in Galicia were transferred to the newly created Audit Union of Ukrainian Co-operatives.

After the First World War the union was revived and reorganized. Its name was changed to Tsentrobank in 1924. The bank continued to function as the overall co-ordinating body for the rural Raiffeisen credit co-operatives and the urban Ukrainbank credit co-operatives. Initially growth was slow because of the economic depression. In 1928 the membership was 565. By March 1939 the union had 1,889 members, of which 1,732 were co-operatives (including 113 Ukrainbank branches). Tsentrobank shares were worth over 323,000 zlotys. Its reserve funds were 320,000 zlotys, its deposits 2.2 million, its outstanding loans 2.7 million, and its turnover more that 70 million zlotys. From 1924 the managing director of Tsentrobank was Kost Levytsky; his assistants were Omelian Saievych, Stepan Kuzyk; and Ilarii Olkhovy. Volodymyr Okhrymovych, Oleksander (Les) Kulchytsky, Mykhailo Voloshyn, and then Andrii Mudryk served as chairmen of the board of directors. Tsentrobank ceased to function in 1939, following the first Soviet occupation of Western Ukraine. Under German occupation (1941–4) it was revived partially: it had 71 Ukrainbank branches, but its activities were limited. The second Soviet occupation put an end to its activities.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 5 (1993).]

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