M&T Bank will cut 747 jobs in Connecticut once its $7.6 billion acquisition of People’s United Bank is complete, the Buffalo, New York-based financial institution told labor officials last week.
The bank filed a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) with state officials Thursday, which outlined job cuts at 16 locations. Most of the cuts — 661 — will take place at People’s United’s Bridgeport, Connecticut, headquarters.
- The cuts represent 13% of People’s United’s workforce of about 5,600, according to the Hartford Courant.
M&T announced its plans to acquire People’s in February, an all-stock deal expected to close in this year's fourth quarter, pending regulator and shareholder approval.
The combined bank would have $205.4 billion in assets and cover 12 states from Maine to Virginia, plus the District of Columbia. People's United's Bridgeport office is expected to serve as M&T's New England regional headquarters.
In its filing with the Connecticut Department of Labor, Christopher Faulkner, group vice president of employee relations at M&T, wrote the cuts are expected to begin Oct. 1 and be completed by May next year.
The reductions will "ensure our new organization is structured in a way that provides the best quality service for our customers and communities," an M&T spokesperson told the Hartford Courant in a statement.
"We believe this is necessary to remain competitive within the broader marketplace, reduce costs over the long term and avoid overlap following transaction close," the spokesperson said. "While these are difficult steps to take, we are confident that the streamlining will help ensure we are delivering the services our customers need, where they need it, while retaining jobs for our dedicated employees."
Seventy-nine percent of People’s United employees, including branch and customer service workers, will keep their jobs following the acquisition, the spokesperson said.
The bank said impacted employees can apply for 1,500 open positions at M&T’s locations, which stretch from Washington, D.C., to upstate New York.
People’s United employees who lose their jobs as a result of the merger will be given first priority for the open positions that meet their experience and qualifications, the bank said.
As is the case with most bank mergers, M&T is counting on a reduction in expenses as a result of the combination. The bank anticipates its will save about $330 million in annual expenses that would otherwise be duplicated.
The merger would also create a branch network of 1,100 branches, although People's United said it plans to shrink about one-third of its physical footprint.
The bank said it won’t renew its contract to maintain 148 branches within Stop & Shop locations, mostly in Connecticut and New York, once it expires in 2022. People's United operates about 450 branches overall, according to The Wall Street Journal.