Deutsche Bank will navigate the narrow path between its promises to shareholders to cut costs integrating its Postbank unit into existing retail banking operations and promises to its workers to avoid layoffs until the middle of 2021 by offering a voluntary buyout program to cut about a thousand employees.
The offer of early retirement or severance won’t come cheap, but Deutsche hopes to realize savings of €900 million ($1.07 billion) by cutting back duplication, sharing infrastructure and combining the two building societies, BHW and Deutsche Bauspar. The buyout offer will remain open until the end of October. According to sources in financial circles, the bank hopes that about two-thirds of the voluntary terminations will come through early retirement and one-third through severance packages. Some 750 are targeted for Postbank, and the rest at the parent bank.
Deutsche Bank confirmed the buyout program without providing any details. “The voluntary program should help to leverage the cost synergies,” a bank spokeswoman said. Some 31,000 are currently employed in the two operations. The buyout program, which was launched on Monday, has already met with high demand, sources said.