Follow One Man’s 40-year Business Journey, From Inside An Elevator

Ambitious startup entrepreneurs wondering what the future may hold could do worse than watch this new spot from HSBC.

The 90-second film from the global commercial arm of the bank depicts the 40-year career of one businessman, from the launch of his new enterprise in 1974 to today. We see his excited arrival at new offices and a growing team expanding over the years, there are successes alongside trials and tribulations and even a punch-up. Beards come and beards go. What’s unusual about it is, it’s set entirely in an elevator.

The ad, created by agency Grey London, goes into great detail in terms of fashion and hairstyles as it passes through time and the interior of the elevator also changes to represent different eras. Several dialogue-free story lines are followed, including an office romance and a tense foreign investment deal.

The film aims to show the human story behind the ups and downs of running a business and is the latest work in HSBC’s “It’s Never Just Business” campaign, which launched in October last year with press, outdoor, digital, and airport executions. It breaks on TV globally this week.

It was directed by Gary Freedman of The Glue Society via Independent films and is the first TV spot for HSBC commercial banking by Grey London, which won a chunk of HSBC’s advertising business in 2013, splitting creative duties with JWT and Saatchi & Saatchi.LJ