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ACTIU Berbegal y Formas, S.A.
Société Générale
May 2019 | 4 minutes

The French financial services and investment bank, Société Générale, has renewed the image of its flagship branch offices in the Serbian cities of Belgrade and Novi Sad, towards a more modern aesthetic, in line with the visual identity of other European branches.  In order to improve customer service and become the largest bank in Serbia, a new business approach was needed which, in addition to making changes in the roles of staff, involved a strong commitment to technology and a space design based on customer experience, with offices that have moved away from their traditional role, as places used for physical transactions, to become digitalised.

Create a renewed environment, where customers feel comfortable and relaxed, in contrast to traditional bank branches, which are generally strict and formal. This was the premise that Société Générale gave ArcoSITE, who took on the project of redesigning both offices. Based on a preliminary concept created by the bank, together with a London agency, the Serbian architecture studio carried out the interior design project, as well as selecting materials and furniture, and performed complete construction works, interior furnishing and

Located in two historic 350 square metre buildings in the centre of Belgrade and Novi Sad, both offices take up the two floors of buildings used exclusively for the bank. The completely glazed continuous façade allows lots of natural light to enter a cosy and friendly interior that opens out to pedestrians.  

To enhance the warmth that the bank wishes to transmit to its customers, materials such as wood and textiles are combined with striking wall coverings and floors with different finishes, including carpets, rigid core PVC floors, Wood design LVT flooring and ceramic tiles.

The furniture combines custom made pieces with Actiu furniture, chosen by ArcoSITE due to “its ergonomics, ease of use, functionality and a unique design that brings exclusivity to the space and responds to Société Générale's new work philosophy”.

The primary colours chosen coincide with Société Générale's corporate colours, red and black, combined with neutral grey tones and others typical of wood.

A large central space, with an information desk, an ATM area and another waiting area, welcomes visitors in both branches. The perimeter and the upper floor are reserved for offices and semi-closed meeting rooms, with colourful and geometric glass partitions that enhance visual fluidity.

The Bend soft seating is everywhere in the open and communication areas, creating informal meeting points that add warmth and proximity to traditionally cold and impersonal environments.

In the customer service and private office areas, the TNK Office Chairs coexist with the Uma chairs. The former add elegance and exclusivity to the professional environment and guarantee the well-being of workers thanks to their technological backrest. The homely touch is provided by the natural lines and the discreet and elegant style of the Uma Meeting Chair, with wooden legs and upholstered in red and grey to welcome customers.

To enhance transparency and warmth, the offices can be seen by the public through large glass panels. On the inside, the Twist Spine Office Desks add a modern twist to the traditional office, by allowing to reach a file next to you and to rotate its individual desk.

The operations room in Novi Sad, has been equipped with Prisma Desks , with red and grey panels that add privacy. The minimalist aesthetics and finishes of the tables combine perfectly with the Efit office chairs that, in addition to providing comfort, add personality and strong differential aesthetics by breaking with the dominant corporate colours.

Without giving up on its corporate identity, but committing to a much warmer and current aesthetic, in line with new workspaces, Société Générale has renewed its image in Serbia. To this end, it has created offices built around aspects such as transparency, flexibility, dynamism, technology, digitalisation, proximity and a certain homely nature, with which the French bank is reinventing banking.

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