Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Romania's BCR bank to cut 18 pct of workforce

Dec 17 (Reuters) - Romania's largest lender BCR, owned by Austria's Erste Group Bank, will cut 1,600 jobs, or about 18 percent of its staff, due to tough market conditions, its CEO said on Monday.

BCR plans to close more than 60 unprofitable branches and cut employee numbers to 7,500, Chief Executive Tomas Spurny told local media.

Romania has been a tough market for Erste and other banks, but provisions for bad debt there should fall significantly in 2013 when the volume of non-performing loans should peak, Erste said last month.

Erste said it would inject more money into BCR via a capital increase worth nearly 111 million euros ($146 million).

"The most important thing is how to ensure a good future for the 7,500 people who remain at the bank," Spurny said in remarks confirmed by a company spokesman. ($1 = 0.7628 euros) (Reporting by Sam Cage and Radu Marinas; Editing by David Cowell)

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