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Nationwide branch advert banned as misleading

A Nationwide advert has been banned for incorrectly suggesting that the building society has not been closing branches.

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Nationwide branch advert banned as misleading

Editorial

This content has been selected, created and edited by the Finextra editorial team based upon its relevance and interest to our community.

In October and November, Nationwide ran a TV, radio and press ad that sees Dominic West cast as an out-of-touch bank boss. West, who works for the fictional A.N.Y Bank, is determined to introduce cutbacks and branch closures, despite his more astute assistant, played by comedian Sunil Patel, questioning his decisions.

The ad features the slogan: "Unlike the big banks we're not closing our branches."

The Advertising Standards Authority received 282 complainants about the ad, including one from Nationwide rival Santander.

The agency found that over a 10-year period, Nationwide closed 152, or 20% of its branches. Although this was a smaller percentage than competitors, it was still a "significant number," the ASA says.

It has ruled that the ads are "misleading" and "must not appear again in their current form".

In a statement, Nationwide says: "We recognise the ASA’s decision and are delighted to have the opportunity to make even clearer our now extended branch promise to keep every branch open until the start of 2028."

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