Financial institutions continue to transform their networks with new branch models very different from the traditional Thus, Banco Santander has transformed the branch it had at number 12 of the Alicante promenade -actually, the old main office of Popular in the city- in a Work Café: a space that combines financial care with meeting rooms, cafeteria and a coworking area.
As explained by the entity, this new office concept – which has 900 square meters, distributed over two floors – will be attended by a team of eight people: six commercials and two baristas.
With this inauguration, sOn already 59 the Work Café that the bank has spread throughout Spain, 43 of which are located on university campuses and another 16 in urban centers. Of these, 5 are in the Valencian Community: 2 in urban centers (Valencia and Alicante) and 3 in universities (University of Alicante-Campus San Vicente del Raspeig, University of Valencia-Campus Tarronger and University Jaume I of Castellón-Campus del River Sec). The Work Cafés in Spain already have 160,000 active customers and receive an average of 180 visits per day.
According to the territorial director of Banco Santander in Valencia and Murcia, Luis Rodríguez, this new format “reflects the bank’s commitment to an innovative distribution model, with unique spaces for customers and non-customers, which integrates banking, cowork and specialty cafeteria and that is based on the physical-digital binomial”. In addition, the new space will host events for startups, businesses, SMEs and companies, as well as other groups, such as senior or young university students.
Banco Santander points out that this commitment responds to the needs arising from the changing habits of consumers and society in general and in it combines in a single place the provision of banking services, meeting and co-working spaces and the best coffee of specialty, in order to respond to the demands of consumers “more informed and demanding and more sensitive to the shopping experience”.
In these collaborative spaces, in addition to organizing talks, conferences and courses of interest, any user can to work, connect to the Internet, hold meetings and, of course, carry out the usual financial procedures.
Likewise, Work Café customers can initiate conversations directly with their manager through the app, make telephone contracts to save time and have a 24×7 telephone service managed by a specialized telephone team.
This new branch concept was born in Chile in 2016 and is already present in nine countries where Grupo Santander has a presence: Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Poland, the United States and Spain. The first office of this type in Spain opened its doors in 2018 in Madrid, in Plaza Sagrados Corazones. Currently, Grupo Santander already has 150 centers of this type distributed throughout the world and continues with its expansion plans.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.