Leading law firm Blake Morgan has advised Metro Bank, the revolution in British banking, on obtaining a 25 year lease on a new retail unit on Queens Street in central Oxford.
This is the latest development in their ambitious growth strategy and the new store opens today (31 August). Existing stores in the Thames Valley include Reading, Newbury, Swindon, Aylesbury and High Wycombe. Famous for providing an unrivalled banking experience, the retail, business and private bank has recruited around 25 local talent to join the revolution in their first ever Oxford store.
Blake Morgan’s real estate and construction teams assisted Metro Bank with the negotiation of the lease. The deal was led by real estate legal director Anna Larbi alongside team members Debbie Brown, Graham Bennett and David Kianizadeh. The expert team also drew on the experience of Blake Morgan expert planning lawyer Guthrie McGruer alongside construction lawyers Ed McMullen, Marilyn Miles and Rebecca Munday. The team have a long standing relationship with Metro Bank having worked with them on numerous high profile acquisitions since 2011.
Anna Larbi, legal director and real estate expert at Blake Morgan who led on the transaction said: “This is a prime location in the centre of Oxford and we are pleased to have advised Metro Bank on the opening of the store. Not only will this enable more customers to benefit from their first class services but it will create more jobs in the local area. We wish them every success with their latest opening.”
Metro Bank provides instant account opening, along with on-the-spot card printing, meaning customers can walk in without an appointment and walk out with a fully-functioning account. What’s more, the Oxford store has almost 3,000 safe deposit boxes for customers to store their valuables and free coin counting facilities. Customers will be able to manage their finances between 8am and 8pm Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm on Saturday and 11am to 5pm on Sundays and bank holidays.
Calum Ewing, head of property at Metro Bank said: “We have a long standing relationship with Blake Morgan who have advised on a number of acquisitions and banking services. We would like to thank the team for their professionalism and ability to making the grant of the lease as seamless as possible.”
Metro Bank currently has 58 revolutionary stores and has ambitious plans to open c.100 stores by 2020, bringing traditional face-to-face banking, supported by state-of-the-art technology to more local businesses and residents across the UK.
Blake Morgan has a formidable Real Estate team of more than 60 lawyers who deal with a wide range of real estate projects including commercial and residential development, property investment and asset management, corporate occupier work and rural and agriculture. The Southampton Real Estate team was named Property Law Firm of the year at the 2017 South Coast Property Awards.
The team has extensive experience of advising businesses on the acquisition, management, leasing and sale of high value commercial properties, from single properties to large portfolios.