Girobank to disappear in Alliance & Leicester rebrand

LONDON - The Girobank brand is to disappear after 35 years today, when Alliance & Leicester rebrands all its commercial banking businesses under the one name.

From today July 7, Girobank and Alliance & Leicester Business Banking will operate under the name Alliance & Leicester Commercial Bank. The company hopes it will help customers recognise that Girobank is no longer owned by the Post Office.

The move is also designed to allow Alliance & Leicester's business customers deal with one unified company and be more aware of the wide range of services it offers.

Richard Banks, wholesale banking director at Alliance & Leicester, said: "Instead of dealing, for example, with Girobank for cash services and separately with Sovereign Finance for asset finance, customers can now access a wealth of competitively priced finance offerings clearly branded 'Alliance & Leicester'."

The Girobank brand originated in Liverpool and was born 35 years ago as National Giro. In 1977, it rebranded to National Girobank and a year later was the first bank to provide free current account banking to customers in credit. It was acquired by Alliance & Leicester in 1990, and is the biggest cash handling bank in the UK, processing over £83bn in business takings in 2001.

It has no branches of its own, but operates through 17,000 Post Office outlets throughout the country.

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