Charter One is now Citizens Bank. The name change, first announced last year, is part of parent company Citizens Financial Group’s broader strategy to unify brands across its 11-state footprint. The company until today had operated as Charter One in Ohio and Michigan.
“As we enter a new era for our company in Ohio with the name Citizens Bank, a name that has been central to our heritage since our founding in 1871, we are as committed as ever to providing our customers in Ohio with the best possible banking experience to help them bank better,” said Bruce Van Saun, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Citizens Financial Group. “We are excited by the opportunity to continue serving our customers and growing in Ohio as we pursue our goal of becoming a top-performing regional bank.”
“This is a very exciting day for all of our colleagues here in Ohio,” said Joe DiRocco, Ohio president of Citizens Bank. “With our new signs now up, we are spending the day thanking our customers for their business and also doing what we can to help local families in need. Our name is changing, but everything else stays the same – we are as committed as ever to our customers and to the local communities we have served here in Ohio since 2004.”
Citizens began notifying customers of the name change last year. New Citizens signs were unveiled at more than 120 branches across northeast Ohio and at the bank’s corporate office today. The name change will not affect existing customers, who will retain their account numbers and their Charter One-branded checks, credit cards and debit cards. All online and mobile banking passwords will also remain the same.
“Brand Opening” Festivities
To celebrate the “brand opening” of the Citizens name in Cleveland, the company is hosting several celebrations across the region today, including:
- Citizens Bank grocery give-away: From 4:30-6:30 p.m. today, Citizens will give away $50 in groceries to the first 1,000 shoppers at the Giant Eagle supermarket at 3050 W. 117th St. Those 18 and older are eligible to participate and will receive a $50 gift card offered on a first come, first served basis. Individuals can start lining up at 3:30 p.m. to receive a $50 gift card. Citizens Bank executives and colleagues will help carry groceries.
- Greater Cleveland Food Bank donations: Citizens Bank colleagues will join Greater Cleveland Food Bank representatives to stuff 400 backpacks from 6 to 8 a.m. with nutritious food to be given to area children. Citizens Bank also is making an $80,000 donation to the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.
- Customer Appreciation Events: All of Citizens Bank’s in-store branches will host customer appreciation events with refreshments and a $100 gift card for one lucky winner per location. All other branches will host customer appreciation activities throughout the day.
“Citizens Bank’s new name in Ohio demonstrates its commitment to continue supporting the local community as an excellent corporate citizen,” said Kristin Warzocha, president and CEO, Greater Cleveland Food Bank. “We congratulate them on this important milestone and thank Joe DiRocco and the whole Citizens team for choosing to celebrate today by enhancing the company’s tradition of supporting people in need across Northeast Ohio. They have long been a leader in our work and an extraordinarily generous partner.”
“Giant Eagle has long been dedicated to supporting hunger relief and education initiatives in the communities that we serve,” said Giant Eagle spokesperson Dan Donovan. “We applaud Citizens for demonstrating a similar commitment with this charitable in-store event to benefit the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and support disadvantaged students in an effort to improve the health and wellness of people throughout the community.”
New Marketing Campaign
Citizens Bank today also introduced a new marketing campaign called “Ask a Citizen” featuring the personal lives and financial expertise of real Citizens Bank colleagues, including several colleagues in Ohio.
“Consumers today are looking for help planning to pay for college, to pay off their debt, to retire and to meet other financial goals, and they prefer to get this help from someone they know and trust,” said Brad Conner, Vice Chairman and Head of Consumer Banking, who was in the Midwest for today’s festivities. “Our customers come to us every day to tap into our expertise in these areas. We are very proud of the results that our colleagues are delivering for our customers and very excited to feature some of these ‘real-life citizens’ in our new campaign.”
The campaign, which underscores the shared life experiences and the relationships of trust between Citizens bankers and their customers, focuses on some of the core challenges consumers face today – saving for retirement, paying for college, paying down debt and managing a household budget that allows for unexpected expenses. The campaign will be supported by radio, television, digital and outdoor advertising in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts starting this week.
About Citizens Financial Group, Inc.
Citizens Financial Group, Inc. is one of the nation’s oldest and largest financial institutions, with $136.5 billion in assets as of March 31, 2015. Headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island, Citizens offers a broad range of retail and commercial banking products and services to individuals, small businesses, middle-market companies, large corporations and institutions. In Consumer Banking, Citizens helps its retail customers “bank better” with mobile and online banking, a 24/7 customer contact center and the convenience of approximately 3,200 ATMs and approximately 1,200 Citizens Bank branches in 11 states in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions. Citizens also provides mortgage lending, auto lending, student lending and commercial banking services in select markets nationwide. In Commercial Banking, Citizens offers corporate, institutional and not-for-profit clients a full range of wholesale banking products and services including lending and deposits, capital markets, treasury services, foreign exchange and interest hedging, leasing and asset finance, specialty finance and trade finance. Citizens operates through its subsidiaries Citizens Bank, N.A., and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. Additional information about Citizens and its full line of products and services can be found at www.citizensbank.com.
Lauren DiGeronimo, 781-751-1454