MILAN (Reuters) – Italy’s top bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, has reached an accord with unions paving the way for the early exit of 2,000 staff that will be partly offset by 1,100 new hires, the sector’s main union FABI said on Tuesday.
FABI said the exits would be voluntary, giving employees the option to retire early, and the new hires would have a permanent contract.
“We took early action before the new business plan (by Intesa) where we think digitalisation will play an important role,” FABI secretary general Giuseppe Milazzo said in a statement.
In a separate statement, Intesa said the exits and new recruits would be completed by the end of 2025.
Intesa merged with smaller rival UBI last year to create Italy’s biggest bank by assets. Following the acquisition, Intesa in September 2020 announced it had agreed with unions at least 5,000 voluntary layoffs and up to 2,500 new hires.
Taking into account the September 2020 agreement, a total of 9,200 people will have left the group by the first quarter of 2025 and 4,600 people will have been hired by December 2025, Intesa said.
“We have one of the biggest generational change programmes in Italy,” Intesa’s chief operating officer, Paola Angeletti, said.
After announcing earlier this month that it had met its 2021 profit goals ahead of target, Intesa said it would use the money in the year’s final quarter to cover restructuring charges and loan loss provisions ahead of the new business plan.
Italian banks traditionally lay off people on a voluntary basis only, using a costly scheme that allows older workers to retire early and receive up to 90% of their salary until they qualify for pension.
(Reporting by Valentina Za; editing by Francesca Landini and Leslie Adler)