400 layoffs announced by Britain’s Co-operative Bank while merger negotiations are ongoing

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400 layoffs announced by Britain's Co-operative Bank while merger negotiations are ongoing
400 layoffs announced by Britain's Co-operative Bank while merger negotiations are ongoing

The Co-operative Bank of Britain said that it had started a consultation process to cut some 400 positions, or 12% of its workforce, as part of broader efforts to streamline operations and save costs.

The Co-operative Bank of Britain announced on Tuesday that, as part of larger measures to streamline operations and save expenses, it had begun a consultation process to eliminate almost 400 jobs, or 12% of its workforce.

The announcement of the planned layoffs comes after a multi-year transformation of the British bank, which included an IT investment program of 100 million pounds ($126.46 million).

“The decision has not been made lightly, and the Bank will continue to work closely with our trade union and to support impacted colleagues,” it said in a statement, describing the cuts as “essential” for the delivery of its strategic plan.

After receiving several non-binding approaches from prospective bidders, Co-op Bank, which provides loans to individuals and small and medium-sized enterprises, said late last year that it had started exclusive talks with Coventry Building Society with an eye toward a potential merger.

According to a Co-Op Bank representative who gave details, talks with Coventry are still underway.

One of the busiest periods of consolidation in the British banking industry in recent memory is currently underway, with smaller lenders looking to band together to more effectively compete with the likes of HSBC, Barclays, NatWest, and Lloyds Banking Group.

The boards of Virgin Money UK and Nationwide announced last week that the details of a 2.9 billion-pound merger had been agreed upon, which would make it the second-biggest supplier of savings and mortgage products in Britain. ($10.7908 in pounds sterling)

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