Commerzbank’s shareholder Cerberus has urged the German bank to slash more than 7,000 jobs to reduce costs, Reuters has reported citing a person familiar with the matter.
The US activist investor is one of the largest shareholders of the bank with a stake of over 5%.
The shareholder said it has a “succinct view” on the measures Commerzbank needs to take for the redundancies and other moves, the report added.
At the end of 2019, Commerzbank employed 48,500 people. A source said that the headcount reduction will be “definitely beyond” the reported 7,000.
The bank is expected to announce the details of all the cost cutting measures by August 2020.
A spokeswoman for Commerzbank said: “Currently, different options and scenarios are being discussed. No decisions have been taken.”
The possibility of the latest retrenchment is currently being discussed by the bank’s supervisory board.
According to sources, the latest job cuts will add to the more than 4,000 job cuts Commerzbank had announced last year.
Reports emerged stating that the bank is also mulling the option of shuttering 400 of its 1,000 German offices under pressure from its shareholders.
While Cerberus is pressing for big changes, dramatic restructuring becomes a major concern for the German banking unions.
Verdi union official and Commerzbank representative of labour on the supervisory board Stefan Wittmann said: “A strategy that is influenced by Cerberus is definitely not in the interest of employees.”
Commerzbank had reportedly scheduled a supervisory board meeting today.
However, the meeting will not take place until the labour representatives review the documents detailing proposals by the bank.
Cerberus had appealed for a speedier change at Commerzbank and demanded two supervisory board seats. The bank, however, rejected this demand.