Commerzbank develops draft of new strategy, to cut 4,300 jobs
Commerzbank announced that its board of directors has developed a draft of its new strategy "Commerzbank 5.0" and submitted it to the Supervisory Board for consideration. The draft will be discussed with the Supervisory Board later this month and then presented at press and investor conferences. In the segment Private and Small Business Customers, Commerzbank will focus on the expansion of its mobile banking capabilities and the possible merger of comdirect bank Aktiengesellschaft into Commerzbank. In the Corporate Clients segment the Bank intends to strengthen its distribution capability, also in particular with corporates in the Mittelstand segment. The draft strategy also foresees total investments of around EUR1.6B. Investments in digitalisation, IT infrastructure and growth account for an estimated EUR750M of this, while restructuring costs in connection with necessary headcount reduction and planned modifications to the branch network account for the remaining EUR850M. The Bank will retain a nationwide presence in Germany with around 800 branches, which reflects a reduction of 200 compared to today. A further Group-wide headcount reduction is regrettable but inevitable. An estimated additional 4,300 full-time positions would be shed across the Group. The planned increase of around 2,000 full-time positions in strategic areas would take the anticipated net Group-wide headcount reduction to around 2,300 full-time positions. The details will be worked out over the next few months in consultation with the employee representative committees. The aim would be to implement the planned headcount reduction as socially responsible as possible. The company added that the draft strategy foresees the sale of Commerzbank's majority stake in mbank and envisages the merger of Comdirect into Commerzbank. The further development of the strategy is intended to help the Bank achieve additional growth in customers and assets, and higher revenues by 2023, even if the market environment continues to deteriorate. Commerzbank would aim for a cost level in 2023 of around 600 million euros lower than in the current year. This would result in a cost base of no more than 5.5 billion euros in 2023 following the sale of mBank. After the implementation of its strategy, the Bank is targeting a Return on Tangible Equity of more than four percent in the medium-term. The capital ratio is set to remain at 12 to 13 percent.