Standard Chartered cuts thousands of jobs as digital plans accelerate

Multinational bank Standard Chartered has revealed plans to cut 4,000 jobs as it accelerates its digital transformation strategy.

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Multinational bank Standard Chartered has revealed plans to cut 4,000 jobs as it accelerates its digital transformation strategy.

As well as closing its equities business, the troubled lender said that it would axe 2,000 jobs during 2015, in addition to the 2,000 cuts announced or completed in the past three months, as part of its “switch to digital”, the bank said.

It was also announced that CIO, Jan Verplancke, is set to leave the firm after ten years.

Meanwhile the restructuring plans also highlighted intentions to speed closure of branches, with a target of shutting between 80 and 100 sites in total.

The moves are part of aims to reduce costs by $400 million (£265m) this year, ahead of further savings in 2016.

“We are realigning staff and resources to meet the changing needs of our clients,” the company said in an email statement to Bloomberg.

“Investing in better technology is a key element of our strategy which will see us moving quickly to adopt more digital and mobile channels that will allow our clients to enjoy easy and convenient banking solutions.”

A number of banks have announced plans to cut thousands of staff as they increase focus on automation and delivery of services through digital channels.

In November, Dutch bank ING plans to axe 1,700 staff, plus another 1,000 contractors, over the next three years as it embarks on a new digital strategy.

Meanwhile, Lloyds Banking Group expects to cut 9,000 roles, while the figure could reach into tens of thousands for Royal Bank of Scotland.

Technology investment has been high on Standard Chartered’s agenda for some time, with plans to digitise “every aspect of banking” in the coming years.

It has also invested in improving system, after receiving a $300 million (£180 m) fine from US regulators for anti-money laundering system failures.

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