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Redefining the high-street banking experience with B Works

Banking meets co-working, coffee and yoga

Deloitte and Market Gravity helped Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank to create and launch B Works, a new flagship digital banking space right in the heart of Manchester city centre.

The banking branch has long formed a crucial part of the UK’s high streets. Countless surveys have identified their importance however, with 1 in 5 banking transactions now carried out on-line many banks have been feverously trying to figure out what this means for their physical high-street presence.

Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank (CYBG) were no exception.

Following the launch of the B digital banking platform CYBG set out on a journey to redefine the role that their own branch network needed to play in what was becoming an increasingly digital business.

The answer couldn’t be another digital concept branch filled with noise and nonsense that at worries more about egos than the experience. It needed to be a space that was true to B and what B stands for. A space that gave B a voice on the high-street and showed the world that B didn’t think, act or talk like a bank.

In short, it needed to be a space that talked to customers, not for them.

So, we helped CYBG to open the doors to Studio B; a space where ‘The next generation of banking is designed by the next generation of customers’. Located on Kensington High Street in London, the Studio B Innovation Lab, which we set up and ran, created a creative, interactive space designed to open minds and inspire the kind of thinking that could shape the future of banking.

Against a backdrop of disappearing branches and dilapidated highstreets, Studio B has shown that physical spaces still have an important role to play for banks and customers alike. In fact, 81 per cent of consumers would still want to speak to someone, or to visit a branch, no matter how advanced technology gets1. Studio B has redefined what it means to walk into a bank branch, and its’ shown that bank branches can have an impact far beyond their postcode.

B Works is the next step in this journey for CYBG.

Part bank branch, part creative hub, the brand new, first of its kind space on Market Street in Manchester wants to break down the fears both individuals and businesses face when it comes to finances, offering an innovative environment where people can learn, work and bank.

Free-to-use to customers and non-customers alike, B Works provides visitors with access to everything you would expect from a full-service digital bank as well as range of services that re-define the relationship people have with their bank; including:

  • Co-working spaces and hot desks
  • A social studio
  • Free WiFi and charging points
  • Complementary fitness and yoga classes

If that’s not enough visitors can access a partner programme of carefully curated events and masterclasses as well as access to on-site expert advice and support.

Or they can simply pop in for a free cup of coffee.

The bank branch is no longer a place to just deposit a cheque in record time. It’s a space to connect. To collaborate. To build. And to grow.

It’s a space to learn, work and bank.

The role of the bank is changing and the reality is that more customers are choosing to bank digitally… we’re confident that by creating an informal space that encourages innovation, co-creation and supports growth for local consumers, entrepreneurs and SMEs, we’ll transform the way our customers interact with us.

       - Helen Page, CYBG Group Brand and Marketing Director

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1 Bank to The Future, CBYG, March 2019

Find out more about the B works on CYBG’s website.

About Market Gravity

Market Gravity is a proposition design consultancy and was acquired by Deloitte in 2017. We work in partnership with the businesses that want to challenge the accepted. The teams that want to push themselves further. The leaders who understand the value in bringing big ideas to life. Together with our clients we uncover opportunities and design and launch new products and services that reshape industries and deliver growth. Brands, like Aegon, Coca Cola, American Airlines, Barclays, Boots, British Gas, Castrol, Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks, nPower and Standard Life trust our team, and our track record. Discover more about Market Gravity.

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