Bank apologises over refusal to open sex toy business account

Posted: January 3, 2017

The apparent double standards of UK High Street banks have been highlighted by The Sun, which has reported that the Royal Bank of Scotland refused to open a bank account for an adult business being set up by one of its existing customers because it was “not comfortable being linked with sex toys” – despite the same bank looking after Ann Summers, according to records at Companies House.

Perhaps The Sun took an interest in the case because the business – called Toolboxxx – was started by Page 3 glamour model Rhian Sugden. The 30-year-old, who has had an account with RBS since she was 16, according to the report, was quoted as saying: “They said they were not comfortable being linked with sex toys. So I was livid when I found out they’ve got Ann Summers, who sell more toys than anyone.”

Rhian’s plight will ring a bell with some ETO readers, who have been treated the same way by UK High Street banks, though the last part of her quote might indicate why banks are able to put aside their reservations and, no doubt with a degree of forbearance, bathe in the millions of pounds of transactions flowing from the biggest sex toy retailers.

Whenever ETO has attempted to intervene in a case like this on behalf of one its readers, the stock answer from the banks is that they cannot discuss account applications with third parties, but The Sun said that 24 hours after it spoke to Rhian, RBS had offered her a business account after all, and reportedly said: “We made a mistake and we have apologised.”

So does this mean that the UK High Street banks are now happy to take on new accounts from sex toy retailers? Please share your experiences with