DBS I-Designed-A-Bank Competition: Melissa Koh, took first place with her bright & unconventiona

Quoting Jeffry Pilcher, CEO/President and Founder of The Financial Brand:

"In the “Under-26” category, Melissa Koh, a third-year design student, took first place with her bright and unconventional Lego block design concept."

In the UrbanWire interview:

The design student said, “I just wanted to create a fun environment… because Lego is changeable and youths get bored of things quickly. There are custom-made ATM machines which I made to look like vending machines so they are fun and portray convenience as well.”

Download the original media release here

SINGAPORE, 14 October 2010 – DBS Bank today announced the winners of its "I-Designed-A-Bank" branch design contest in Singapore. The bank received over 80 design entries for this first-of-its-kind contest. The top three entries from each of the two categories; Open and Under-26, showcase a wide range of innovative concepts from leveraging new technology to using Lego blocks.

Kenneth Koh and Colin Chew, both 27-year-old Masters graduates from the School of Design and Environment at NUS, captured the judges’ attention with their refreshing, innovative and well thought through submission entitled, “DBS Workshop at SCAPE”. They were awarded the first prize in the Open Category.

Tri Hariyanto Mohammad and Luke Ng, both professional designers, won the second and third prizes respectively in this category. In the Under-26 category, Melissa Koh, a third-year School of Design student from Nanyang Polytechnic, took first place with her bright and unconventional Lego block design concept. Kyzer Ong, 22, a SIM University undergraduate came in second while a team submission from four Nanyang Polytechnic students, Wong Yi Mong, Mah Pei Ying, Shushannah Lee and Jessica Lim came in third. The contest is an initiative between DBS and *SCAPE to reach out to young people and provide them with opportunities to showcase their talent and creativity. Four out of five entries received came from those under 26.

DBS partnered *SCAPE and conducted a series of contest briefings at various educational institutions and there was strong support received from tertiary institutions such as Nanyang Polytechnic, Republic Polytechnic and Singapore Polytechnic. The contest also attracted a large Facebook crowd of over 2,000 followers via its dedicated I-Designed-A-Bank Branch Facebook page. The youngest person to submit a design entry was Denise Leong, aged ten.

Jeremy Soo, Managing Director and Head of Consumer Banking Group Singapore, said, “The younger generation represents the future of Singapore and we are glad to have had this opportunity to harness their creativity and address emerging youth trends. We hope to cater to the evolving banking needs of the young as the new DBS youth branch at *SCAPE will be a purpose built branch, based on the winning entry from the two NUS graduates."

He added, “The judges were impressed with many of the ideas presented. Besides ensuring that the basic banking needs are catered for, many showcased interesting ways on how they could transform the banking experience and effectively utilise branch space. It was interesting to note that there were many entries that focused on providing youth with educational activities leveraging the latest technology and encouraged youth."

The panel of judges included: Sim S Lim, Singapore Country Manager, DBS Bank; Jeremy Soo, Managing Director & Head of Consumer Banking Group Singapore, DBS Bank; Karen Ngui, Managing Director, Group Strategic Marketing and Communications, DBS Bank; Evelyn Lau, General Manager, *SCAPE; Jeremy Au Yong, Political Correspondent, The Straits Times; and Pann Lim, Exco Member, The Design Society

Winners from the Open and Under-26 Categories will each receive cash prizes of SGD 5,000 for first place, SGD 4,000 for second place and SGD 3,000 for third place. With this contest, DBS sets out to create a new banking experience for the youth segment in a unique and engaging way. The new DBS Youth branch at *SCAPE will be operational in the first half of 2011.

About DBS DBS - Living, Breathing Asia

DBS is one of the largest financial services groups in Asia with operations in 15 markets. Headquartered in Singapore, DBS is a well-capitalised bank with "AA-" and "Aa1" credit ratings that are among the highest in the Asia-Pacific region.

As a bank that specialises in Asia, DBS leverages its deep understanding of the region, local culture and insights to serve and build lasting relationships with its clients. DBS provides the full range of services in corporate, SME, consumer and wholesale banking activities across Asia and the Middle East. The bank is committed to expanding its pan-Asia franchise by leveraging its growing presence in mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan to intermediate the increasing trade and investment flows between these markets. Likewise, DBS is focused on extending its end-to-end services to facilitate capital within fast-growing countries such as Indonesia and India.

DBS acknowledges the passion, commitment and can-do spirit in each of its 14,000 staff, representing over 30 nationalities. For more information, please visit www.dbs.com