M&S Bank steps up expansion efforts with free current account launch

M&S Bank is looking to nab customers from the major high street banks with the launch of its first fee-free current account and will try and entice people to switch with a £100 M&S gift card.

M&S Bank will offer £100 M&S gift card to entice people to switch.

It is hoped the summer launch will expand the bank’s customer base and allow it to compete with the likes of Barclays and Natwest. Currently, the bank only offers “Premium Current Accounts” that charge a £17.50 monthly fee.

Current account customers will earn loyalty points for every £1 spent in M&S using their debit card. The gift cards will be handed to those that switch from rivals using the Payment Council’s switching service, launched in September 2013 to try to make moving between accounts easier. 

M&S Bank has been building its portfolio and presence since 2012 when it announced an expansion of in-store branches. It is looking to attract customers of established banks looking for an alternative in the wake of the financial crisis and the numerous scandals that have eroded trust in the sector. 

Colin Kersley, CEO of M&S Bank, says: “Our premium current accounts, developed specifically for the regular M&S shopper, have proven popular with this audience and following the launch of the current account switch service, which has made switching faster and easier, we want to offer the same transparent banking and great service to a broader audience with the launch of the M&S Current Account.”

The current accounts will initially only be available to existing customers but will be rolled out widely. No timescales were provided, however.

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