We launched a challenger bank in the midst of a financial crisis. That’s not for the faint-hearted

The challenge
Shawbrook Bank believes in the power of small businesses, but in 2011 the global recession was in full force, banks weren’t lending, many small businesses were unable to get credit and bankers were demonised. Against this backdrop it was our job to launch, and cement the position, of a new bank.

Our approach
We challenged the way banks are seen and positioned Shawbrook Bank as a ‘new kind of bank’ offering small businesses (SMEs) and individuals a no-nonsense alternative.

Strong thought leadership, including comment pieces in the national press on SME lending and better banking, helped to highlight the bank’s expertise, while regular announcements through national broadcast, digital and print coverage kept the bank’s growth firmly in the public eye.

Policy makers and small business groups were engaged to endorse Shawbrook’s expertise, and an extensive poll of UK SMEs illustrated the struggle to secure finance from high street banks.

The results
We secured an impressive 143 pieces of coverage in regional, national and international news for Shawbrook’s launch. Highlights included: BBC Breakfast, Today Programme, Financial Times, The Guardian, Daily Express and The Times.

The coverage was overwhelmingly positive, with huge support shown for a new bank coming into the marketplace.

We maintained Shawbrook’s high profile post launch, creating demand for the bank’s savings and lending products, and supporting its ambitious growth targets.


Keith Kelly and wife Kornelia, own their own dance studio because Shawbrook Bank backed their business.

The team at Stand Agency truly understands our brand and has been a genuine partner to us during the creation and launch of Shawbrook Bank.

They have always offered professional and accurate consultancy which is considered, timely and effective and this advice has enabled us to generate support and positive coverage at a difficult time for the banking sector.

As well as sound strategic advice, their execution is great and we have generated impressive national and trade coverage.”

Stephen Johnson

Managing Director, Commercial Mortgages - Shawbrook Bank