Financial services group ING said on Monday it is cutting its workforce by up to 7,000 jobs over the next five years, of which 2,300 will be lost in the Netherlands.
In Belgium, 3,500 jobs will go, equivalent to 40% of the local workforce. In addition, 950 jobs currently done by people on temporary contracts and through staffing agencies will be cut.
The bank plans to invest some €800m improving digitalisation and creation of a single banking platform for all countries where the bank operates. It is taking a provision of €1.1bn to cover the cost of the overhaul.
The job losses and other efforts to boost efficiency will lead to annual cost savings of €900m by 2021, the bank said in a statement. ING booked net profit of over €4bn in 2015.
The strategy includes ‘a number of initiatives to further improve the customer experience, further grow primary customers and lending, and increase efficiency,’ the bank said.
‘Customers are increasingly digital and bank with us more and more through mobile devices… and they expect us to adopt new technology as fast as companies in other sectors,’ chief executive Ralph Hamers said.
‘At the same time, banks are confronted with continuous regulatory burden and a prolonged period of ultra-low interest rates. These factors put pressure on the returns which are necessary to fund growth and investments, and cover our cost of capital.’
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