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Citizens Financial Group announces Green$ense environmental and economic savings

Green$ense rewards customers cash for reducing paper-based payment transactions

Providence, R.I.       (April 21, 2009) - In anticipation of Earth Day on April 22, 2009, Citizens Financial Group today announced that its industry-first Green$ense incentive program has rewarded Citizens Bank and Charter One customers with nearly $2 million for helping the environment by reducing paper with electronic banking-payment transactions. 

Launched in October 2008, Green$ense rewards customers 10 cents for each electronic payment they make, up to $10 per month and $120 per year. Based on current enrollment, Green$ense will provide significant benefits to the environment in 2009 alone, according to Cooler, Inc., including:

• More than 220,000 pounds of paper saved.
• More than 1,300 trees preserved.
• Nearly two-million square feet of forest saved, or 42 acres.
• More than one-million gallons of waste water prevented.
• More than 6,300 garbage bags not filled. 
• More than 13-million pounds of CO² equivalents avoided.

CFG expects the annual impact of Green$ense to double by year’s end, given the current enrollment rate, which may likely increase thanks to a special offer that enables new customers who enroll by May 15, 2009, to earn double rewards – 20 cents per eligible transaction for a total of $240 in the next year.

“We are committed to helping our Citizens Bank and Charter One customers save more and earn more through innovative products and services that make a meaningful difference in their everyday lives,” said Theresa McLaughlin, Citizens’ Chief Marketing Officer. “The benefits of this program show how small, everyday activities such as reducing paper-based transactions can have a tremendous impact on the environment. We are pleased to offer this first-of-its-kind program to our customers, and proud of the impact it is having on our environment.”

According to the U.S. Postal Service, the average U.S. family receives approximately 19 bills and statements and makes seven payments in paper per month. By eliminating these paper statements and processing these transactions electronically, the average family can save about seven pounds of paper, 63 gallons of water and 24 square feet of forest a year according to Cooler, Inc. Citizens Bank and Charter One customers can calculate the individual effect they will have on the environment by reducing their paper-based transactions with a special online calculator available at the Citizens Bank and Charter One Web sites.

Unlike other incentive programs, Green$ense deposits cash directly into a customer’s checking account on a monthly basis, providing greater savings and spending flexibility. And, rather than limiting cash payouts to debit card transactions, Green$ense customers earn money for debit card purchases (signature and PIN), online bill payments and recurring payments, making it the most robust program of its kind in the industry.

Enrollment in Green$ense is free for all Citizens Bank and Charter One customers with a checking account, including Green Checking, the bank’s free checking product. There are no minimum balance requirements and no hidden fees. As an added perk, customers who enroll in the program will receive an industry-first Green$ense MasterCard® debit card made from recycled plastic. Customers also will be enrolled automatically in online banking with free Bill Pay and receive paperless statements.

Customers who enroll in Green$ense will automatically receive their banking statements electronically. Each month, customers enrolled in Green$ense will receive an e-mail from Citizens Bank or Charter One providing the customer’s monthly Green$ense cash payout amount and tips and ideas for greener living.

Customers can begin the enrollment process online at www.citizensbank.com or www.charteronebank.com, by calling the bank’s 24-hour, live customer service line at 1-888-910-4100 (Citizens) or 1-877-242-7837 (Charter One), or by visiting any Citizens Bank or Charter One branch. All customers, existing and new, will then be required to “e-sign” through online banking to confirm enrollment.

About Citizens Financial Group, Inc.

Citizens Financial Group, Inc. is a $160 billion commercial bank holding company. It is headquartered in Providence, R.I., and, through its subsidiaries, has more than 1,500 branches, approximately 3,600 ATMs and approximately 23,000 employees. Its two bank subsidiaries are RBS Citizens, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. They operate a 12-state branch network under the Citizens Bank brand in Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont, and the Charter One brand in Illinois, Michigan and Ohio. CFG has non-branch retail and commercial offices in about 40 states. It is one of the 10 largest commercial banking companies in the United States ranked by assets. CFG is owned by RBS (The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc).