Three years after Germany’s savings banks association DSGV sought a court injunction against Banco Santander using the colour red in its almost 350 branches in the country, the battle goes on. The German newspaper Die Welt reported on Tuesday that DSGV has set up a deadline through a lower court for the Spanish entity to change its image or face a fine.
According to Die Welt,
“recent surveys confirm that the German people identify the colour red not only with love, but also with the savings banks.”
By December 16, Santander should take off the bright red logo from banners and offices, as well as advertising, in Germany. DSGV wants the exclusive right over the red colour but, although back in February the Hamburg Regional Court of First Instance conceded the favour to them, Santander appealed and a final decision has not yet been made.
Santander spokeswoman Anke Wolff told the German daily that
“We are very surprised. It is unusual that an attempt is made to execute a verdict in the first instance.”
Santander has since 1980s dressed in red, more than 14,000 retail outlets worldwide use the uniform code and has so far showed little willingness to introduce new tones to appease its German competitors.
As AFP explained in this news piece,
“Each of Germany’s domestic banking giants has traditionally been associated with its own different colour: blue for Deutsche Bank, yellow for Commerzbank and formerly green for Dresdner Bank, which has since been absorbed into Commerzbank […] German savings banks claim to hold a monopoly on the colour red in the domestic banking sector.”