First Citizens Bank to lay off 100 Milwaukee-area employees

Corporate positions impacted as North Carolina bank absorbs Guaranty Bank

A Guaranty Bank branch at East Pointe Marketplace on Milwaukee's East Side.

Raleigh, North Carolina-based First-Citizens Bank & Trust Co. has notified the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development that it plans to lay off at least 100 employees in the Milwaukee area.

A Guaranty Bank branch at East Pointe Marketplace on Milwaukee’s East Side in May 2017.

First-Citizens assumed the deposits, $829.6 million in assets, and 12 of 119 branches of Glendale-based Guaranty Bank when it failed in May 2017. Last month, it bought some of the Guaranty real estate, including at 4000 W. Brown Deer Road in Brown Deer.

In its notice to the state, First-Citizens says the affected workers are based at 4000 W. Brown Deer Road and at 501 W. Northshore Drive in Glendale, locations at which it has both branches and offices. The DWD indicated those branches would close, but the bank later sent a clarification statement that the branches would not close and the layoffs are corporate positions.

“We have no plans to close either the Guaranty Bank Brown Deer branch at 4000 W. Brown Deer Road or Bayshore branch at 5610 N. Bayshore Drive in Glendale,” the company’s statement said. “The staff reductions mentioned in a regulatory filing impact corporate staff locations and associates, who have been previously notified. No branch associates are impacted.”

First-Citizens indicated it does not have an exact number of affected positions, but it expects at least 100 employees to be affected between the two locations. The layoffs will begin June 8 and continue through September.

So far, First-Citizens has identified 12 affected positions, including collector, loan support specialist, loss mitigation specialist and quality assurance specialist.

First-Citizens now operates 11 Milwaukee-area First Citizens Bank branches, 10 of which are a division of Guaranty Bank and one that is a First Citizens Bank from a previous acquisition.

When it was shut down, Guaranty had 1,000 employees, about 600 of which were based in Wisconsin. About 300 of those worked at the company’s corporate headquarters in Glendale. About 500 employees were immediately laid off. First-Citizens previously indicated its systems and product integration for the banks would occur at the end of 2017 or early in 2018 and would not indicate whether employees at Guaranty’s Glendale headquarters, where Guaranty operated a call center, check processing and other back office functions would keep their jobs.

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Molly Dill
Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.