Citigroup is set to announce its first big round of layoffs

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Citigroup plans to announce Monday the first big round of layoffs in a sweeping restructuring — the bank’s biggest revamp in nearly two decades — that will ultimately cut thousands of jobs.

The restructuring process, codenamed “Project Bora Bora,” is in its early stages, people close to the plans said. Citi, which is conducting a top-to-bottom review of its organizational structure, has only filled about 1 percent of jobs at the bank, or about 2,400 of a total of 240,000 jobs. It is not clear how many positions will be reduced in this round.

Last month, Citi said the previous two rounds of job reviews, which affected only approximately 200 jobs, had resulted in roles being reduced by 15 per cent, and the abolition of 60 operating committees.

Chief Executive Jane Fraser, who unveiled the restructuring in September, had previously told staff that the bank expected to complete the restructuring and resulting redundancies by the end of March 2024. Fraser had named her direct reports at the time of the initial announcement. These executives had previously announced the hundreds or so people who will run various areas of the bank’s business.

On Monday, heads of various business units are expected to tell their staff at Citi’s New York headquarters and elsewhere who will fill the next layers of leadership. Many of the people appointed to jobs in this round will already be in those roles, although some shuffling of positions at the bank is expected, one of the people familiar with the plans said.

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Individuals in positions that are eliminated, or who are not hired for a role at their current management level, will be given a transition period during which they can apply for other positions at Citi. At the end of that period, the Bank will provide employees who have not been appointed to new positions with details of their severance packages.

City declined to comment.

Citibank insiders say they were given very little information about the process, other than a meeting Fraser led at city hall shortly after the restructuring was announced. Many employees said they welcomed the changes, although some were frustrated by the pace of the process, and the fact that the bank had not yet announced a cost-cutting target or the number of jobs that would be cut.

Fraser stressed that the restructuring aims to improve the operations and efficiency of the bank, which many say has long been plagued by its “matrix” management structure, and not just cut costs. Citi hopes that the restructuring process will revive its share price, which was the worst performer in the sector, and improve the bank’s lagging returns. Return on equity rose slightly last quarter to nearly 8 percent, but still lags most of its competitors.

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