Santander UK complains to ASA about Nationwide advert slamming rival banks


Santander UK has complained to the Advertising Standards Association (ASA) about an advert from rival bank Nationwide.

Sky News reported that the Spanish-owned lender complained about a Nationwide TV commercial featuring actor Dominic West as an arrogant bank boss, and comedian Sunil Patel as his assistant.

The broadcaster said that insiders revealed that the complaint had been filed in the autumn, soon after the campaign had launched, and that it claimed it was misleading about other banks closing branches.

The ASA has not ruled yet, but confirmed to Sky News that it had received a complaint about the advert, although it did not confirm that it was from Santander UK.


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The 60-second spot centres on an arrogant bank manager exploiting expenses, and maintaining a large office but deciding to close the actual branch: “We’re not Nationwide, we’re nothing like them,” he says.

The video ends with the phrase: “Unlike the big branches we are not closing our branches. Nationwide, a good way to bank”.

A logo “Any Bank” alludes to the fact that the arrogant boss represents rival banks, with Nationwide being different in its approach. The building society has launched a rebrand centred around its branch promise not to leave any town or city where it is based until 2026.

It marks the most significant rebrand for the bank since 1987.

It comes amid mass bank closures with over half of London’s banks having closed since 2015.


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