The Slovenia Times

Two biggest banks to lay off about 10% of employees


NKBM and Abanka, which will be merged by the end of the year, currently employ about 2,090 people, while another 160 work at NKBM's leasing arm Summit Leasing. Unofficial sources say that some 250 emoloyees are to be laid off in the coming months.

NKBM has told the STA that there has been a significant shift in the way clients use banking services, as most routine services are performed through mobile apps and online banking.

The number of NKBM's digital services users has grown by 60% over the past two years, while the number of active users, who use online banking at least once a month, has grown by 78%.

The bank expects this to grow even further and said that its products were being shaped in a way so that clients are no longer required to visit the bank office in person.

NKBM thus plans to merge five smaller offices with nearby larger ones by the end of June. Offices in Solkan, Bovec, Celje, Krško and Žiri will be shut down.

The bank said that trade unions would be informed about the layoffs beforehand and that soft attrition would be pursued whenever possible.

The bank also pointed to the planned merger with Abanka as part of the reasons for the layoffs, but did not mention the effects of the coronavirus crisis.

Meanwhile, the business newspaper Finance reports that NLB plans to lay off over 300 employees out of a total of 2,650 by the end of 2020.

NLB told the STA that its medium-term plan as regards the number of employees remained unchanged - 20% or over 500 people are to be let go.

Since late 2014, the group has already reduced the number of staff by 13.6% or by 925 employees.

The bank told the STA that the situation had changed significantly, as banks experience significant pressure on revenue due to lower margins in the face of expansive monetary policies, macro-prudential restrictions imposed by Slovenia's central bank on household borrowing, and the non-payment of dividends by subsidiaries.

It also said that the coronavirus functioned as a catalyst, demanding even faster response from banks.

Like NKBM, NLB said that user habits have changed significantly, with ever more clients opting for digital services. Not only are digital services easy to use, they are also safer in terms of health.

The bank thus plans to close ten offices out of a total of 90. Most employees will be relocated to other offices and some will work in the client contact centre.


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