New name, new visual identity – A new bank?

14 August 2020

CEO Christian Bjørløw tells about how the new name and visual identity were created and how Trusted Novus Bank has handled the transition so far.

Once a new owner for Jyske Bank Gibraltar was established, the next stage was to create a new name and a new visual identity.

The first step was to find a new name. Christian explains that they expected it to take approximately a month to find a new name but in fact, it took much longer. “We began with a name competition amongst our employees. It is very important that our employees felt part of the process, and a prize was offered to the employee who proposed the winning name.”

“We received approximately 150 suggestions, many of them very good, and many with a Gibraltar connection, which would have been perfect as we are a local bank.” Unfortunately, none of selected names could be trademarked.

The next step was to seek help via the internet. “There is a portal where for a small price it is possible to request people to make name suggestions. We received 506 suggestions, some better than others. Unfortunately, we again ended up with the same challenge regarding the trademark. We could not find a good name that could be trademarked in Europe, UK and Gibraltar - and so we were back to square one.”

Following further discussions, it was then decided to incorporate TN into the name – an idea that had initially been put forward by our new owner. However, there was already an existing trademark in the US and so; TN Bank could not be used. Christian then continued to explain, “We decided that the T in TN Bank would be the word “Trusted”, because our bank, first as Galliano’s Bank and then as Jyske Bank, makes us the oldest bank in Gibraltar, with a history dating back to 1855. We also wanted to demonstrate that we could be trusted when we said we wanted to find the best solution for our employees, our clients and the Gibraltar community when considering the purchaser. Trust is also essential in banking. We continually emphasise that our advice is personalised, and trust is vital in order for us to be able to offer our clients personal advice and for them to follow the advice”.

The N in TN Bank is “Novus” which means “new” or “re-energised” in Latin, and to us, it also means out of the ordinary. 

The visual identity was somewhat easier to decide upon. Christian comments, “Firstly we wanted the logo to carry some resemblance to the one we used as Jyske Bank, to reflect that we were not completely new. Secondly, we wanted to show that we are very closely linked to Gibraltar. As a result, we decided upon the green square, which is very similar to the Jyske Bank logo and then, the campion flower as a part of the logo, together with Trusted Novus Bank. The campion is unique to Gibraltar and was believed to be extinct, but in 1994 it was re-discovered, growing in the Upper Rock area. It is the only place you can find this specific flower growing in the wild. It is out of the ordinary just like us”!  

One thing is a name and a visual identity; another is the transition into Trusted Novus Bank, a process that has started but is of course ongoing. “I believe that we are managing the transition tremendously well. I think the whole organisation has been, and is being incredible during this period of change,” Christian states.

He believes that the transition for clients has been made much smoother because there has not been any need for a change in their account numbers, cards, etc. From a practical banking aspect, the change of ownership has had no impact on any clients.

Christian continues, “Of course there was massive preparation behind the scenes in order for us to become Trusted Novus Bank, but the transaction service agreement with Jyske Bank Denmark has facilitated the process. They help us in certain areas, and we have a two-year period to prepare for being 100% independent. In the future, there are a few areas where we will choose to still get assistance from Jyske Bank. If we didn’t have this agreement in place with our previous owners the transition would have been far more difficult.”

Many tasks and processes have already been transformed. There was a list of more than 500 different tasks that had to be executed prior to “completion” in the beginning of April. Nevertheless, there is still a huge amount of work still to be done. Christian states, “Honestly there haven’t been any major hiccups, and our aim is not to have any as we move forward in the transition.”

Christian further comments, “We were put up for sale in January 2019 which understandably led to a lot of uncertainty among our clients. We made it clear from the outset that it was important for the bank to find a solution which was the best for the employees, the clients and the jurisdiction.” He continues, “The intention during the whole sales process was to retain as much of the existing bank as possible. Of course there will be some changes as we have a new owner, but these will be changes for the good, for sure.”

Christian is very grateful for the loyalty shown by the clients. “We have had a fantastic support from all our clients. They have been understanding throughout the sale and transition process and remained with us. This was extremely important in the sale process, as it enabled us to show that we still had a very good business worth buying! If we had lost many of our clients during the sales process, for sure, it would have been more difficult to sell the bank. So I want to say a massive thank you to our clients who remained loyal and supported us during the uncertain times.”

Another aspect that has helped the bank retain clients through the transition is the employees. “I think it has helped that the management team and a majority of the employees have stayed. It really means a lot to clients and stakeholders to have continuity and be able to speak to the employees who they have come to know and trust. As I mentioned before, a relatively small number of employees left the bank the last year, but this meant that we have welcomed some new employees. We are very grateful to our old, and new, loyal employees,” Christian concludes.