The Branch Isn't Dead After All

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22 February 2011
Bart Narter
Celent hosted an event in London with Anthony Thomson, co-founder and chairman of Metro Bank. Metro Bank is the first new High Street (main street retail) bank in the UK in over 100 years and is founded on the same precepts (with the same founder) that launched (now TD) Commerce Bank, "America's Most Convenient Bank." Metro Bank talked about a customer acquisition strategy that relied in large part on a branch expansion in Greater London. They expect to have 220 branches in Metro London with 10 years. One of the Metro Bank tenets is that customers will trade rate for a better retail experience. Now we hear that JPMorgan Chase. CEO of Retail Financial Services Charlie Scharf is planning to open up to 2,000 new offices over the next five years with a focus on California and Florida. Hasn't he heard of alternative channels. Didn't these banks get the memo? The branch is dead! What do these banks know that other don't?

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