Running a business is about more than just the numbers — it’s about people and human ambition. To encapsulate this, we created a film depicting one man’s journey, from the launch of his company in 1974 up until the present day, and tells the story of everything he’s experienced in between: the up-and-down, four-decade journey of a business, from start-up to multinational corporation. The twist? It’s set entirely in a lift. Given the intimate and up-close nature of the location, the shoot was a considerable undertaking in attention to detail — from wardrobe, makeup and hairstyling to prosthetics and props. Not only did the actor have to look 40 years older by the end of the film, everything in the lift had to represent the style of the era being portrayed. The end result is as much a mesmerising portrait of four decades as it is the life of a business. The film, which airs globally (including in the UK and Hong Kong) on TV and inflight media, is part of HSBC’s It’s Never Just Business campaign, which launched in 2014 with press, outdoor, digital and airport executions.
The Elevator Pitch is a content, live event and education-led project that positions HSBC firmly as champions of small business. It comprises a series of talks from industry experts, helpful guides and a competition — where 10 finalists from more than 1000 applicants pitched their ideas in 90 seconds for a chance to win £150,000. An activation of the global 'Lift' TVC, these Elevator Pitches had a twist: taking place in the elevator of London’s tallest building, the 95-story Shard.