Santander UK, British subsidiary of the Spanish Grupo Santander, will close 140 offices in the United Kingdom to adapt its structure to the demand of digital banking, which will affect 1,270 jobs, announced today in a statement. The entity explains that the reduction of branches, up to 614, is made "in response to how customers choose to carry out their banking procedures."
The company says it is in contact with the unions to try to relocate at least a third of the affected employees, whom they will "support" during the process.
In the last three years, the number of transactions carried out in bank offices has fallen by 23%, while that of digital channels has increased by 99%, he points out.
As part of the restructuring, Santander UK will invest 55 million pounds (63 million euros) in reforming a hundred offices in the next two years, to change the concept towards a greater "personal service, convenience and connection with the community," he says. According to the note, the future branch network will combine larger offices that will offer services to clients and local businesses and other smaller ones with the latest technology.
The bank will also support customers affected by the closures, informing them about other ways of doing their business, either by phone, through other offices or digital applications.
The Director of Commercial and Retail Banking, Susan Allen, found that in recent years "has changed drastically" the way in which customers want to make their transactions, with more and more users of digital and mobile banking. "Consequently, we had to make very difficult decisions about the branches that were least visited and those that had others very close," he explained.
Allen said that Santander UK "continues to believe that branches have a vital role to play" and, for this reason, it will reform its office network to adapt to new needs.