Hybrid bank and café branch from Santander in Chile

International bank Santander has introduced a new branch format in Chile, where it is seeking to create a community space that is half bank and half café.

The Santander WorkCafé format has been designed by South American customer experience consultancy PX Group. The concept provides co-working spaces, a café, and banking services. Clients and non-customers can use free wi-fi, use the discounted café, and use meeting rooms, as well an engaging with Santander staff for financial advice. There are also self-service kiosks for Santander customers to make transactions.

The branches feature extensive use of technology, with touch sensors integrated into sign-in kiosks and a video wall consisting of four 55” screens, which is a central feature of each branch and shows information including news, economic statistics, and promotions. Zytronic touch technology is used to give customers an intuitive interface with technology.

“WorkCafé Santander transforms the way we connect with customers, non-clients and the community. It is a reflection of the changes that we are seeing in our relationship with customers and what they expect from their banks. WorkCafé is targeting and encouraging a younger generation of clients, especially entrepreneurs, to come and meet us as well as to interact with us online,” says Santander general director for commercial and retail banking Matias Sánchez.

“With more than 15 years of retail design and innovation experience, we saw WorkCafé as a perfect challenge to transform the bank branch. Touch technology was very important to our concept and we partnered with Zytronic to deliver the tablet-like touch experience that customers expect,” says PX Group sales and innovation manager Anneliese Schemke.

The bank has implemented the new format in 20 branches, and plans to introduce a further 20 new branches by the end of 2018.

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