Abbey jobs at risk in bid to save £300m

Abbey
staff face an uncertain future after Banco Santander Central Hispanico (BSCH),
the Spanish bank taking over the company in an £8.5bn deal, revealed plans to
achieve cost savings of €450m (£300m) within three years of the merger.

Disclosing
details of the merger, which would create the world’s 10th largest bank, BSCH
said the cost savings "will imply significant reductions in the size of
middle and back office processing areas".

The
statement from BSCH and Abbey did not specify the number of jobs that will go,
but the warning of cuts is certain to create unease among staff at the UK’s
second-largest mortgage lender.

Abbey,
which has 741 UK branches, employs 26,000 people.

By Daniel Thomas

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