RBS is changing its name to NatWest – here’s why and what it means for customers

RBS is changing its name to NatWest – here’s why and what it means for customers
This is what the change of name means for the bank (Photo: Shutterstock)

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has announced that it will be changing its name to NatWest, with the change expected to take effect later this year.

This is what you need to know about the bank’s change of name, why it’s happening and how it will affect customers.

Change of name

The Royal Bank of Scotland Group said that it would be renaming itself as NatWest Group.

The Edinburgh banked bank also owns NatWest and Ulster Bank in addition to RBS.

RBS announced that they intended for the name-change to “be legally effective later this year”.

Why is this happening?

The announcement explained, “Given the Group’s progress, solid financial footing and the forward-looking strategy it is now implementing, it makes sense to put in place a Group name with the brand under which the majority of our business is delivered.

“NatWest represents approximately 80 per cent of our customer base.”

It is thought that the rebrand is hoping to steer the banks image away from its association with the financial crisis it has suffered in the past. The bank was rescued by the government in 2008.

Which branches are affected?

RBS explained that they “have no plans for any branch closures this year” but went on to say that “we always keep our network under review as we continue to respond to the changes in the way our customers are choosing to bank with us”.

The announcement emphasised that the name change will have no impact on their branch footprint.

Will this affect customers?

RBS chief executive Alison Rose told the BBC’s Today programme that the name change would not alter any services for RBS or NatWest customers.

“Our customers don’t interact with RBS Group so this change won’t affect them,” explained the announcement.

In England and Wales, most of the RBS customers bank with NatWest, in Ireland it’s Ulster Bank and in Scotland it’s the Royal Bank of Scotland, so these high street brands won’t change as a result of this announcement.

“Scotland is an important part of the bank’s heritage and our commitment to our customers and colleagues in Scotland and to The Royal Bank of Scotland brand will remain unchanged,” the announcement read.

“Our registered office and our three main key legal entities will remain in Scotland.”

This article originally appeared on our sister site The Scotsman