HSBC is to shed 50,000 jobs globally in a major restructuring that is intended to save the bank $5 billion per annum by 2017.
The drastic action will see the bank sell its businesses in Turkey and Brazil, shutter bank branches and shift more tech development to offshore regions.
Up to twelve percent of the bank's branches globally will be closed as it emphasises a shift to more online and self-service channels. The bank has allocated a $1 billion spend in digital technologies over the next two years to reduce frontline and service roles, while reducing its branch square footage by 20% in seven key markets.
In the UK, where up to 8000 jobs will face the axe, the bank is planning a rebrand of its high street presence but is yet to decide on a new name. Options could include reviving the Midland Bank brand, or adopting the name of its UK online bank, First Direct. The bank has yet to decide whether it will offload the retail bank in the wake of new ring-fencing rules separating consumer banking from the wholesale markets.
A large part of the planned savings will stem for an overhaul of IT, moving more applications to the cloud and shifting development to lower cost economies. China and India will get the lion's share of development work, moving from a 50% share to 75%, with an estimated saving of $525 million.
The bank expects to reap a total of over $1 billion in savings with the move to offshore locations and by eliminating 750 of its existing 6,700 applications, introducing agile methodolgies, buying in more packaged applications and consolidating hardware via a shift to the cloud. A further $0.5 billion will be found from supplier consolidation.
In laying out his plans to reshape the business HSBC chief Stuart Gulliver says: "We recognise that the world has changed and we need to change with it."