- Over 700 former Sovereign Bank branches display Santander brand
- Customer enhancements, community giving program and advertising campaign details revealed as part of $200 million overall investment
- $100 million committed to US higher education institutions over next five years
BOSTON, Oct. 17, 2013 /CNW/ - The Santander retail banking brand was launched in the United States today across the Northeast to 1.7 million retail, commercial and small business customers. Sovereign Bank, a top 25 retail bank by deposits, was rebranded today as Santander. The first retail branch in the United States sporting the Santander brand was unveiled by Emilio Botin, Chairman of the Santander Group, accompanied by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, during a ceremony in New York City's Herald Square this morning.
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Emilio Botin, chairman of the Santander Group, said: "There is no better way to express our confidence in and commitment to the U.S., to our bank here and to our customers. There should be no doubt about our appetite for growth in the U.S. Being in the U.S. makes us a better bank."
Roman Blanco, president and CEO of Santander US, said: "With the full strength and resources of the Santander Group behind us, we're now in an even better position to deepen relationships with the customers, communities and companies we serve. This change in our name sets the stage for a new phase of investment in our customers and growth for Santander in the United States." Mr. Blanco added that Santander will in coming weeks launch a retail banking product aimed at attracting new customers while enhancing the Bank's offering to existing clients. The bank's legal name has been changed to Santander Bank, N.A.
Unveiling ceremonies also took place today in Boston, Philadelphia, Providence and Wyomissing, PA. Installation of over 10,000 interior and exterior Santander signs will be completed over the next few days at the Bank's 718 branches spanning Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island.
Introduction of Santander as "a bank for your ideas"
Today's rebranding of the US bank is in line with Santander's strategy of operating under a single brand in all the markets in which it does business. Since 2005, Santander has rebranded banks in the United Kingdom, Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Mexico, Chile, Portugal and Spain, in order to better leverage corporate resources and the Bank's strong global reputation.
A substantial advertising campaign was also launched today in print, digital and broadcast outlets across the Bank's U.S. footprint. The campaign introduces the Santander brand and its corporate tagline, "a bank for your ideas" to consumers and businesses. The campaign was designed to familiarize customers with the Santander brand as approachable, easy to do business with and focused on enabling customers to bring their ideas to life through innovative financial products and services.
Continued Focus on Improving Customer Experience
As part of the Bank's $200 million investment, a series of enhancements are underway:
- A new release of its highly-rated mobile banking app providing additional functionality for its online banking customers, such as direct transfers to the accounts of other Santander customers, the ability to view transactions and pay credit card bills.
- Completion of a network-wide refurbishment of the Bank's branches, including nearly 1 million square feet of carpeting, 32,000 gallons of paint and installation of all new furnishings.
- Details of a new retail banking product will be announced on October 28.
Expanded Commitment to Education and Community
To further commemorate its retail debut in the United States, the Bank renewed and expanded its support of higher education institutions and local communities across its footprint through two new initiatives:
- Emilio Botin announced that, through its U.S. division of Santander Universities, the Bank would invest $100 million over the next five years to its university and college partners in the U.S. The commitment will include funding for research grants, scholarships, global exchanges and entrepreneurship studies. As part of that commitment, Santander will contribute $1 million toward President Obama's "100,000 Strong in the Americas" initiative which aims to facilitate the annual exchange of 100,000 university students between United States and Latin America and the Caribbean. Globally, Santander Universities, supports higher education through cooperation agreements with over 1,050 universities worldwide and 27 institutions in the U.S.
- In recognition of the close connection between the Bank's customers and branch team members in the community, Santander kicked off a new charitable giving campaign. "Ideas for Good" will allow customers to cast votes for community non-profits at their nearest branch. On November 30, each of the Bank's 700+ branches will announce the selection of a local non-profit to receive a $500 donation.
This additional support builds upon the Bank's support for communities in 2012, when it contributed over $2 million in donations across the Bank's footprint to local non-profit organizations, over $2 billion in loans and investments to low and moderate income individuals and businesses, and over $8.5 million in grants to its university and college partners in the United States.
Santander US is a top 25 retail banks in the United States by deposits, with a presence in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. Santander's 9,218 employees serve the financial goals of American consumers and businesses through its 718 branches and 2,099 ATMs. Headquartered in Boston, Santander is supervised by the Office of the Currency of the Comptroller and is FDIC insured under its legal name, Santander Bank, N.A. Santander in the United States is a wholly-owned, financially autonomous subsidiary of the Santander Group. For more information about Santander in the United States, visit www.santanderbank.com or call 877-768-2265.
Santander (SAN.MC, STD.N, BNC.LN) is a retail and commercial banking group with a presence in ten main markets. Santander is the largest bank in the euro zone by market capitalization. Founded in 1857, Santander had EUR 1.342 trillion in managed funds, 102 million customers, 14,680 branches – more than any other international bank – and 186,785 employees at the close of June, 2013. It is the largest financial group in Latin America and has significant positions in the United Kingdom, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Poland and the northeast United States. Santander was recognized in 2012 as Best Global Bank by Euromoney, ranked as a top Greenest Global Bank in 2013 by Bloomberg BusinessWeek and was named 2013 Sustainable Global Bank of the Year by the Financial Times. Santander's attributable profit rose 29% from a year-earlier to EUR 2,255 million in the first half of 2013. For more information about Santander, visit www.santanderusa.com.
SOURCE: Santander US
For further information:
Mary Ellen Higgins, Director of Public Relations, 617.346.7431
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