Royal Bank of Scotland is in talks to sponsor English cricket as it looks for ways to promote its NatWest brand in England and Wales.
The Edinburgh-based bank is to give increased prominence to its NatWest operations as it pulls back further from the global domination pursued under Fred Goodwin before its 2008 bailout.
The NatWest logo could replace that of Waitrose supermarket on the shirts of cricket players if talks with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) can be completed. NatWest has a long association with English cricket, covering sponsorship of county cricket and the T20 Blast.
The increased visibility of the NatWest brand is also being imposed on RBS by the European Union under the terms of its £45bn taxpayer bailout – the RBS brand will in effect disappear from England and Wales.
The 300 RBS branches on high streets in England and Wales and a handful of NatWest branches in Scotland are being replaced by the Williams & Glyn brand to comply with the EU’s requirement that it create a new high street bank. The RBS brand will, however, retain its dominant presence on Scottish high streets.
The makeover has been planned for some time. Last year, it emerged that RBS intended to axe its bold uppercase logo and replace it with rbs.
RBS also has other brands, such as the private bank Coutts, which recently announced it would sponsor Sir Ben Ainslie’s America’s Cup team.
But the bank, which declined to comment on a report it was tying with up the ECB, is no longer attempting to make its brand known globally as it had been before its near-collapse, when it was plastered over entrances at Edinburgh airport and on Formula One cars.
Offloading Williams & Glyn has proved complicated, and in April the bank admitted it might miss the deadline, which had already been extended to December next year. RBS has also said it may try to sell the branches rather than conduct a stock market flotation.
This article was written by Jill Treanor, for theguardian.com on Friday 17th June 2016 16.25 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010