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Standard Bank: Cultivating excellence and trust in African banking

Brand Finance
09 April 2024

Standard Bank is recognised as the most valuable banking brand in Africa and South Africa for the third consecutive year, a remarkable achievement reflecting the brand's resilience and role as a catalyst for progress across the continent. At the heart of Standard Bank's success is its commitment to driving Africa's growth, its continual refinement of strategies to meet evolving customer needs, and a purpose-driven ethos that has enabled the brand to cultivate trust and position its talented workforce as proud ambassadors. Read more about the brand's continued growth in an interview with Diana Springer, Head of Brand and Marketing at Standard Bank Group.

Standard Bank has been recognised as the most valuable banking brand in Africa and South Africa, for the 3rd consecutive time. What do you believe is the secret to the brand’s resilience and success? 

Diana Springer, Head of Brand and Marketing, Standard Bank Group

Our commitment to driving Africa’s growth is at the heart of our brand’s success. Our extensive physical and digital network and resources serve millions of people and businesses across the continent, reflecting our scale and impact. We strive to be more than a financial services brand; as a partner and catalyst for inclusive and real growth, we set ambitious goals for the future. 

Our brand’s longevity and our ability to evolve have transformed ‘growth’ from a positioning statement into a meaningful promise to our clients and stakeholders in all 20 African markets and six international centres in which we operate.  

Resilience in branding, especially in the financial services sector, is about more than just weathering storms - it’s about thriving amidst them. For the Standard Bank Group, our adaptability has been crucial. We’ve continually refined our strategies to stay ahead of market changes, technological advances, and evolving customer needs. Our purpose-driven ethos is more than a catchphrase; it’s a decision-making framework that guides us, particularly during tough times, like the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Established and defended over more than 160 years, trust is a cornerstone of our brand, and we take our responsibility as one of Africa’s most trusted and admired brands seriously.  

How does Standard Bank involve its employees in contributing to and aligning with the brand’s values and goals? 

Our people, and the calibre of talent we attract, are extremely important to us. Recognised by Forbes as one of the ‘World’s Best Employers’ in 2023, we’re equally invested in our people’s own growth. 

Our employees are the embodiment of our brand. In a world where technology, pricing and product design can be replicated, it’s the human contribution that sets us apart. We cultivate a culture of high engagement, where our employees are deeply connected to our purpose. This connection motivates and enables them to deliver exceptional service, which in turn drives customer satisfaction and brand success.  

Our employees are our brand ambassadors, and their commitment to our values is evident in the service and solutions they provide every day. 

Looking to the future, what plans and strategies does Standard Bank have to further strengthen its brand and continue the growth of its brand value? 

As we look ahead, we’re focused on embedding the powerful promise of growth into every facet of our operations. We’re simplifying and optimising our brand portfolio to make our offerings more accessible, consistent, and appealing. We aim to deepen the emotional connection with our customers, leveraging our iconic brand assets to remain modern and memorable. Our commitment to intuitive and engaging experiences, for our employees and clients, will ensure that the Standard Bank brand continues to be synonymous with holistic growth. We’re not just preparing for the future; we’re actively shaping it. 

The Standard Bank Group’s journey is one of positive impact, commitment, and unwavering trust. With a clear vision for the future and a real understanding of the needs of its customers and employees, our brand stands as a beacon of resilience and growth in the African financial services industry.  

About the Author

Brand Finance is the world’s leading independent brand valuation and strategy consultancy. Headquartered in the City of London, we are present in over 20 countries.

For almost 30 years we have helped companies and organisations of all types to connect their brands to the bottom line.