June 19, 2019 / 10:00 AM / 3 months ago

UPDATE 1-Polish bank to fire up to half of its staff

(Adds more information on the reasons of the decision and quotes)

WARSAW, June 19 (Reuters) - Polish mid-tier lender Idea Bank SA plans to cut its workforce by half this year to cut costs and boost profits, it said on Wednesday.

“The reason for the planned layoffs is the need to restructure the operating costs, including the reduction of the level and cost of employment at the bank,” the bank’s statement said.

Idea Bank said it would save 50 million zlotys ($13.13 million) a year by cutting around 750 jobs.

“Despite the fact that the origins of 2018’s high losses came from the past and the then-unstable business model, their size requires extraordinary actions today. They are necessary to heal the bank,” Idea Bank CEO Jerzy Pruski said in a statement.

Last year Idea Bank’s net loss amounted to 1.89 billion zlotys ($496.14 million). In the first quarter of 2019 it suffered a 81 million zloty loss.

Idea Bank and another lender, Getin Noble Bank are controlled by businessman Leszek Czarnecki.

Last year he accused the head of the financial sector supervising authority KNF, Marek Chrzanowski, of seeking a multi-million dollar payment in return for support for loss-making Getin Noble. Chrzanowski said he was not guilty. Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage: ($1 = 3.8094 zlotys) ($1 = 3.8077 zlotys) (Reporting by Marcin Goclowski, editing by Louise Heavens)

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