Simple is a virtual bank without physical branches, working through online banking, an official website, and mobile applications for Android and iOS. Provides Visa cards to account holders. It is part of the Allpoint network with free access to 55 thousand ATMs. It is part of the BBVA Group, one of the largest financial institutions in Europe. In November 2020, together with him, it came under the jurisdiction of PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.
Meaning and History
This organization’s activity started in 2009 when it was founded by three financiers: Alex Payne, Joshua Reich, and Shamir Karkal, who took key positions in the management. They have worked as CTO, CEO, and CFO. The virtual banking structure they created was first concentrated in Brooklyn. A few years later (in 2011), her office moved to Portland, Oregon (USA).
The change of location was the strong financial support from several investors and one fund. In the new city, the bank opened a head office, collecting interest on customer deposits and charging an exchange commission. In the winter of 2014, it was acquired by one of the largest banks in Europe – Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria. And from the end of autumn, Simple, as part of BBVA, moved to PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.
Each of the key stages in the bank’s work was reflected in its symbolism. The main changes occurred at the start of his career, with the expansion with the move to Portland and after his purchase by BBVA. In total, Simple has three emblems.
2009 – 2011
At the beginning of its work, the bank took a laconic logo, which exactly echoed its name – BankSimple. It was really simple and consisted of a miniature icon on the left and text on the right. The icon depicted a wallet, and next to it was the full name of the banking and financial organization. Both elements were bi-colored and consisted of blue and white. The phrase was written in one piece, with each stem highlighted in capital letters.
2011 – 2014
In 2011, the developers removed the word “Bank” from the title, leaving only the second part. They also changed the inscription’s font: “Simple” got a chopped typeface with free inter-letter space. All symbols are crisp, clear, and legible. The seriousness of the banking structure was emphasized by geometric letters.
In contrast to them, there was an icon, which consisted of an interweaving of many lines. They were an allegory for a virtual network since the bank had no physical branches. The red and blue stripes symbolized the cable and communication paths with customers and indicated many services within their structure.
2014 – present
As a result of the redesign, the number of intertwined lines has been greatly reduced. There are three of them left, and they are more like links of a single chain, which is closed on itself. The circle is uneven, with arches protruding along the outer edge. Next to it is the word “Simple” in blue – the designers have removed black from the logo. The letters’ shape and size remained the same – simple, smooth, grotesque, in upper case.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
Since the bank is virtual, the management decided to focus on this and chose elements for the logo that resembles wire communication as much as possible. These are thin lines connected like a cable. They also symbolize communication with customers through mobile applications for smartphones and tablets, online banking, and the official website. Each of the options emphasizes that using this bank is simple, as indicated in its name.
According to the Simple concept, the round icon is a conceptual guilloche pattern that resembles a ring. This is a complex pattern, but it consists of simple geometric lines repeated in a specific order. This logo design is directly related to finance because guilloche is an element of almost all world currencies. It is found on banknotes and is a designation of security and authenticity.
The bank chose the Gotham typeface by Hoefler & Frere-Jones for its logo. She moved into typography from American signage in the early 20th century. And with the advent of modern technologies, it again gained relevance, as it had an appropriate design. The developers only slightly changed the font, adapting it to the bank’s requirements and making it as simple as possible. The color scheme of the emblem is also simple and consists of blue on a white background.