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EXPERT?VIEWS: IS THE VIRGIN BRAND ENOUGH TO DRAW CUSTOMERS TO BANK WITH BRANSON?

<strong>GRAHAM HALES </strong>MANAGING DIRECTOR, INTERBRAND<br />&ldquo;The Virgin brand has always managed to pull customers towards it. Every time the company enters a market it always embarks on a consumer championing. People expect to get a better deal with Branson, and picture it to be a bright, fun environment, which will draw customers in.&rdquo;<br /><br /><strong>ANGELA KNIGHT </strong>BBA<br />&ldquo;Competition for financial services is good for customers and the banking industry. But it&rsquo;s not just about competition ?&ndash; its about innovation and looking at new ways to reach customers. New players in the market &ndash; such as Virgin &ndash; can help stimulate an already competitive market.&rdquo;<br /><br /><strong>IAN WOOD </strong> EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, LANDOR ASSOCIATES<br />&ldquo;Branson&rsquo;s Virgin brand has a degree of trust, so although some of the group&rsquo;s moves have been opportunistic, people are very forgiving if his brands fail. In something technical like investment banking, his involvement would be a disaster, but in consumer banking he&rsquo;ll be fine.&rdquo;