Metro Bank, which currently has 67 stores across London and the South East, continues to grow its network at a time when traditional players in the industry are closing branches. According to analysis from Which?, the West Midlands alone has seen more than 230 branch closures since 2015.
To mark the occasion, Metro Bank – which is known for its exceptional customer service, achieving the top spot in the CMA’s Service Quality Survey – invited businesses, residents and four-legged friends to a two-day grand opening party.
The fun kicked off at 8am on Friday 9th August, with entertainment including stilt walkers, a DJ, free manicures and face painting. Cllr Ian Ward, Leader of the City Council, officiallyed open the store, along with the Bank’s hosts Local Director, Rav Bagri and Store Manager, Beth Freeman.
Metro Bank’s city centre store, located on the corner of New Street and High Street and a stone’s throw from Birmingham’s Bullring Bull, will be the first of four to open in the region this year – followed by new stores in Solihull, Merry Hill and Wolverhampton. The banking revolution is also set to reach the North of England towards the end of the year, with new stores opening in Manchester and Liverpool.
Each new Metro Bank store creates around 25 new jobs for local people and will combine face-to-face banking with state-of-the-art technology, providing residents and businesses with a customer-focused and convenient banking experience.
Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, has welcomed Metro Bank’s opening. The former John Lewis MD, says: “We are always thrilled to welcome innovative businesses to the West Midlands, and Metro Bank sits firmly in that category. Whether it is banking services for local businesses or personal products for retail customers, the new Metro Bank store certainly adds to the broad range of professional services on offer in Birmingham city centre. The opening of Metro Bank also shows how there is still life in our high streets, with new stores and services seeing profitable futures in our region.”
Birmingham City Council Leader, Cllr Ian Ward said: “Birmingham’s residents want a well-connected and vibrant city centre, it’s great to see another new business investing in UK’s second city. Birmingham City Council will be working closely with local communities and traders over the next few months to plan for future growth in the city and make sure Birmingham remains attractive, successful and thriving.”
Craig Donaldson, CEO at Metro Bank commented: “I’m delighted we are opening a store in Birmingham – our first in the Midlands – introducing real choice into how people bank. Our new seven-day-a-week store, will act as a central hub for the local community; hosting regular networking events for businesses, as well as charity and fun-family events for residents throughout the year. Most importantly, our store colleagues will be committed to ensuring customers receive the very best banking service.”
Customers will be able to visit the store seven days a week, with no appointment needed, and open a personal or business account on-the-spot, leaving with their debit card in hand, along with internet and mobile banking set-up. 4,500 safe deposit boxes will also be available at the Birmingham store.
Local companies will benefit from a Local Business Manager ready to help them run and grow their businesses, as well as having free access to the Forum of Private Business’ wealth of bespoke resources and free use of the store’s meeting space.
All stores are open at the most convenient time for local people, from 8am to 8pm Monday to Fridays, 8am to 6pm on Saturday and 11am to 5pm on Sundays and bank holidays, 362 days a year.
The store will also be the bank’s first Midlands location to have a Metro Bank University on the premises – the bank’s internal training academy for colleagues, which offers over 75 courses.