Bank Branches on Way Out? Not for Bank of America

February 27, 2018 05:00 AM


At a time when many financial institutions are scaling back their physical banking networks, Bank of America has announced plans to open more than 500 branches across the US in the next four years.


The bank confirmed details of its latest move to enter the state of Ohio, with the aim of delivering retail banking services in Cincinnati, Cleveland and Columbus.


This follows similar growth in Denver, Minneapolis and Indianapolis, as well as a recently announced initiative to expand into Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


As well as opening new financial centers, Bank of America is set to redesign more than 1,500 sites with new features and technologies. More than 5,400 certified staff are being added to the company’s workforce to meet the needs of customers.


The bank noted that, despite the increasing adoption of digital tools for day-to-day financial services, approximately one million customers visit branches every day for purposes such as getting guidance and advice from professionals.


More than 3,500 ‘digital ambassadors’ are based in Bank of America’s financial centers to help people get to grips with new technologies, while nearly 600 sites have a dedicated learning space where customers can test out key services.


Dean Athanasia, co-head of consumer and small business services at the bank, said: “Our high-tech and high-touch approach means our team is able to help clients with their financial needs throughout their lifetimes and deliver extraordinary client care at all times, no matter how they choose to do their banking.”


Mr Athanasia’s co-head of the consumer and small business division, Thong Nguyen, said: “We continue to deploy significant resources to meet the changing needs of an expanding client base, providing access to capabilities and financial professionals who will offer solutions aligned with our clients’ priorities.”


Another major forthcoming development for Bank of America is the introduction of Erica, its virtual financial assistant, in March.