M&S Bank said, from today, it will begin to contact current account customers informing them of the changes as well as explaining their options. Those who use M&S Bank branches will also be made aware of the closures.
The bank said with the acceleration on online shopping, particularly since the start of the pandemic, customers have increasingly been opting to bank online, including mobile.
It’s a trend which has been seen since the start of 2019 and accelerated as a result of the ongoing pandemic.
In response, M&S Bank will move to online and telephone servicing, which it says will enable customers to access their accounts at a time to suit them.
As a result of the service changes, as well as M&S Bank’s focus on evolving its credit card and payment offering for customers, the current account offer and associated 29 store branches are set to close from early July.
However, the in-store travel money bureaux, located in more than 100 stores, will be unaffected.
The bank said, alongside its partner M&S, it will be transforming its product and service offering.
Due to launch this summer, it will offer a new reward credit card offering and a digital payment solution for M&S’ growing Sparks customer base.
The new offering will support M&S’ Never the Same Again transformation programme by enabling easy and rewarding ways to pay when shopping at M&S, for both M&S Bank and M&S Sparks customers, who are among the retailer’s most loyal.
First launched in 2003, the new reward card offering will enable customers to access a range of new and digitally-focused benefits, the bank said.
It will be built around customers’ feedback, and is going to launch to existing and new customers in the summer.
M&S Bank will also launch a digital credit option later this year, which it says will create an easy payment solution for Sparks customers.
The new cardless payment solution is set to be available on M&S.com or through the M&S App.
Alongside the M&S Credit Card, and its recently expanded travel money services, the bank will also continue to offer its existing range of general insurance, savings and loan products.
Paul Spencer, CEO at M&S Bank, said: “We have developed the next phase of our Transformation programme to enhance the M&S shopping experience, with an expanded range of payment solutions, which are increasingly integrated with M&S – both in-store and online – offering customers a more seamless shopping and payment experience.
“We look forward to sharing more details on these new products and services soon.
“As we adapt to meet the changing needs of our customers, and we deliver some new – more digitally-focused products and services – it does regrettably mean we will move away from branch-based servicing and the 29-in-store bank branches and associated current account will close this summer.
“We’re now firmly focused on supporting both our customers and colleagues through this change, and the delivery of our transformation plans, which will create new and rewarding payment solutions for M&S shoppers, both in-store and online.”
Kirsty Ward, Director of Bank and Services, M&S, said: “M&S was an early pioneer in retail financial services, and the rapid transformation in how we spend, borrow, save and protect has never been more exciting.
“We are striving to bring our customers the very best financial products that meet their needs today and in the future – and our priority, as set out today, is making it even easier and more rewarding to buy the things they love from us.”
While the M&S Current Account remains open to existing customers until the summer, it is now closed to new customers.