ATHENS Feb 13 Greece's biggest lender National
Bank of Greece on Wednesday said it would cut up to
2,000 jobs, or about 15 percent of its workforce, to generate
savings from its acquisition of smaller rival Eurobank
The cuts will target employees that are close to retirement
and will be carried out on a voluntary basis, the bank said.
They will be completed by March and will only affect National
Bank employees, said a bank executive who declined to be named.
National Bank offered in October to buy Eurobank to create
the country's biggest lender, part of the consolidation to help
the banking industry cope with the fallout from the country's
NBG is offering 58 new shares for every 100 shares of
Eurobank, an offer the smaller bank has said is fair. The
voluntary tender offer runs from Jan. 11 to Feb. 15.
NBG has said that Eurobank shareholders representing at
least 43.6 percent of the bank's stock are in favour of the
offer. The deal will create the biggest Greek banking group in
terms of loans, deposits and branch networks.
Greece's banks are under pressure to merge after suffering
steep losses from a sovereign debt restructuring last year,
heavy deposit withdrawals and rising bad loans. They are short
of cash and so have no option but to swap shares to do deals.