Citizens Bank and Relay Network Receive Award for Innovation Excellence

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Bank recognized by global financial services research firm Celent with a 2016 Model Bank Award for excellence in Digital Transformation.

Citizens Bank Wire

Citizens Bank and Relay Network, the secure customer messaging company, today announced that their digital customer engagement solution, Citizens Bank Wire® by Relay Network, has been recognized by Celent, a global financial services research firm, with a 2016 Model Bank Award for excellence in Digital Banking Transformation.

Citizens Bank Wire is a web-based messaging solution that creates a lasting, digital connection between the bank and its Education Refinance Loan customers. The platform is designed to deliver a consistent stream of value-added, highly targeted, and actionable communications for consumers. Citizens has utilized the solution to help accelerate new student loan applications and improve the on boarding experience.

“Helping our customers get access to the financing they need to help pay for their college education is a key goal for us,” said Brendan Coughlin, president of Consumer Lending for Citizens Bank. “Citizens Bank Wire enables us to make the application process a little smoother for customers and has been helpful in accelerating that process. We are excited to be able to provide student loan borrowers with a technology option to help make paying for higher education a more affordable and simple process.”

Through its partnership with Relay Network, Citizens Bank leveraged mobile communications technology to connect directly with its customers and efficiently assist them along the student loan application process. As soon as a customer submits an online application, a Citizens Bank Wire is generated, establishing an ongoing digital connection marked by triggered, relevant, and personalized communications, pulling applicants through critical next steps in the customer journey. Unique to the Relay Network solution, the entire experience is all done over a secure, private engagement space built just for Citizens Bank and its customers.

As banking customers’ preferences continue to grow and evolve, especially amongst millennials, Citizens recognized the value of partnering with Relay Network to quickly establish a solution that would address the needs of its younger, digitally native banking customers. Thanks to its seamless integration with Citizen’s various technologies and processes, the Citizens Bank Wire was launched in just 30 days and achieved an incredibly high adoption rate, connecting 88 percent of its primary loan applicants. As a result, applicants that were Wired through Relay Network completed 10 percent more applications and did so 40 percent faster when compared to those who were not Wired.

The unique solution was the first of its kind to be deployed in the banking industry and served as a powerful, and now award-winning, demonstration of how the right technology can foster better customer relationships and change the trajectory of a business.

“Relay takes a different approach to customer engagement, starting with a known customer connection,” said Matt Gillin, CEO and co-founder of Relay Network. “That enables companies to deliver personalized communications and experiences down to the individual. Our partnership with Citizens demonstrates the incredible value that can be created when taking this unique approach. We couldn’t be happier about their success and recognition.”

Citizens was recognized in April at Celent’s Innovation and Insight Day, the global research firm’s flagship event held in the Museum of American Finance in New York City. Celent’s annual award program selects ‘model banks and insurers’ and recognizes them for their achievements in the strategic development, degree of innovation, and business and customer impact of banking and insurance technology.

About Citizens Financial Group, Inc.
Citizens Financial Group, Inc. is one of the nation’s oldest and largest financial institutions, with $140.1 billion in assets as of March 31, 2016. Headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island, Citizens offers a broad range of retail and commercial banking products and services to individuals, small businesses, middle-market companies, large corporations and institutions. In Consumer Banking, Citizens helps its retail customers “bank better” with mobile and online banking, a 24/7 customer contact center and the convenience of approximately 3,200 ATMs and approximately 1,200 Citizens Bank branches in 11 states in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions.

Citizens also provides mortgage lending, auto lending, student lending and commercial banking services in select markets nationwide. In Commercial Banking, Citizens offers corporate, institutional and not-for-profit clients a full range of wholesale banking products and services including lending and deposits, capital markets, treasury services, foreign exchange and interest hedging, leasing and asset finance, specialty finance and trade finance.

Citizens operates through its subsidiaries Citizens Bank, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. Additional information about Citizens and its full line of products and services can be found at

About Relay
Relay Network, LLC (“Relay”) ( is an award-winning technology company that connects businesses and customers on their own space for secure messaging. We accelerate engagement by improving customer connectivity and providing simpler ways to get things done. Millions of people use Relay to connect and communicate with the companies they use every day, in the areas that matter: health, wealth, and home. Headquartered in greater Philadelphia, PA, Relay is VC-backed by First Round Capital and NewSpring Capital. Connect with Relay on Facebook and on Twitter at @Relayit. Relay, Relay Wire, and Wire are trademarks and service marks of Relay Network, LLC.

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Elissa Davis

Steve Sylven
Citizens Bank
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