Raffles Place was developed in 1823-24 under the direction of the Raffles Town Plan by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, founder of modern Singapore. It was originally known as Commercial Square, and only renamed after the British founder in 1858. It was the centre of commercial and trading activities of the colonial port city. The office of the Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) Line, a large Japanese shipping company, is clearing visible. Other trading companies, mercantile offices and banks were also housed within the area. Raffles Place continued to grow as Singapore’s financial centre and remained so even after the nation’s independence in 1965. Many office buildings of multi-national firms and banks are still located in Raffles Place even to this day.