RBS to close 158 branches in an effort to focus on its digital shift

The Royal Bank of Scotland is set to close over 150 branches in a move to cut costs, as more customers are switching to digital banking.

RBS is planning to close 30 branches in the UK, with a further 128 of RBS’s sister brand NatWest also planned to close because of the change in strategy.  The bank cited a “dramatic shift” in reference to the increased number of customers who now bank on mobile and digital platforms.

The announcement could put 472 full time jobs at risk, although a reported 300 positions are reportedly planning to be transferred between branches.

The bank also stated that between 2010 and 2015, mobile and online transactions have increased by over 400% and mobile transactions alone have increased by 1,350%.

“After careful consideration of a wide range of factors including regular branch usage and the alternative ways our customers can bank with us,” an RBS spokesperson commented.

“As customers change the way they bank with us, we must change the way we serve them… While the branch will still be a core part of our offering to customers, inevitably some branches will have to close.”

The shift follows suit to several UK high street banks move to shut down banking branches to focus on interacting with customers over digital and online channels.

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