Co-op Bank to cut 400 jobs as takeover talks continue

Manchester-based Co-op Bank announced it will cut about 400 jobs as it moves to “simplify processes, reduce our cost base and make efficiency improvements.”

Last month, Co-op Bank said its statutory profit before tax fell about 46% to £71.4 million in 2023 reflecting “exceptional redress of £28.9m in respect of the legacy business, alongside strategic transformation and advisory costs of £22.5m.”

Co-op Bank said last month it remains in exclusive discussions with Coventry Building Society regarding a possible acquisition of the Manchester firm.

Net interest income at Co-op Bank increased 4% to £477 million for 2023 and net interest margin (NIM) rose 14 basis points (bps) from 166bps to 180bps “with both benefitting from increases in the base rate.”

In a statement on Tuesday, the company said: “The Co-operative Bank has over the last three years pursued a strategy to simplify and transform the business with the aim of delivering long-term sustainable growth.

“We have invested significantly in our business including over £100m in our IT system re-platforming, which is nearing completion.

“As the bank enters the next phase of its transformation plan it will seek to leverage the benefit of this investment and will be taking steps to ensure we have the right resource and processes in place to deliver our customer and commercial objectives.

“Accordingly, the bank has undertaken a review to identify opportunities to simplify processes, reduce our cost base and make efficiency improvements.

“Today, we have announced a series of changes across the bank which are essential for the delivery of the next phase of the strategic plan.

“These include the commencement of a consultation on a proposed operating model restructure which is expected to result in a net reduction of approximately 400 roles (12%) across the bank.

“The decision has not been made lightly, and the bank will continue to work closely with our trade union and to support impacted colleagues.”