29 Jul 2010
Metro Bank, Britain’s first new High Street retail bank in more than 100 years, has opened for business with high hopes of breaking into a sector shaken up by the global credit crisis.
The company’s launch was accompanied with an array of gimmicks to attract maximum publicity, such as the offer of biscuits for customers’ dogs and free breakfasts for clients.
Metro Bank aims to run more than 200 branches across greater London over the next decade and hopes to end up with a 50/50 split between retail and commercial banking, offering a full range of services including a Metro Bank-branded credit card.
Its business plan is largely inspired by the model used by its co-founder, billionaire Vernon Hill, when he founded America’s Commerce Bank in 1973.
Commerce Bank grew rapidly to become a major force in the U.S. financial industry and was eventually sold to Canada’s Toronto-Dominion Bank in 2008.