The first high street bank to launch in the UK in more than 150 years is set to open a branch in Birmingham - creating dozens of new jobs.
Metro Bank was founded in London in 2010 but so far its growing network of around 50 outlets has been focused solely on the capital and South East.
The so-called 'challenger bank' is now poised to expand into the Midlands after lodging new plans with Birmingham City Council to open on the ground floor of 85-88 High Street.
Metro Bank has agreed a 25-year lease on the units at the corner with New Street which are currently occupied by Vodafone, Card Factory and Foot Asylum.
In addition to the bank itself, which will create up to 30 jobs, there will be training facilities for approximately 200 people to serve planned future openings elsewhere in the Midlands.
The group was founded by American Vernon Hill, a former fast-food restaurant franchisee who launched a similar challenger bank called Commerce Bancorp, in New Jersey, in the 1970s.
It was later bought out and the brand dissolved.
Metro Bank offers retail and commercial banking services, but has no investment arm, and its trading hours typically mirror those of retailers.
Hours of business are seven days a week, including bank holidays, and until 8pm during the week.
It says it wants to focus on local customers and lending to small- and medium-sized businesses.
This would be the third opening of a new bank branch in this part of the Birmingham in recent months, going some way towards counteracting a trend of branch closures by companies such as Halifax, HSBC and Lloyds.
TSB chose Birmingham last year as the English test bed for its new style of bank branch, joining a sister venue in Aberdeen, where it offers the latest in smart technology services and face-to-face personal banking.
And Yorkshire Bank is currently fitting out a unit in New Street for its digitally focussed banking service called 'B' which is due to launch here in September.