HSBC targets further Scottish expansion as new office for 400 workers comes online

hsbcBritain’s biggest bank is to open a new Scottish hub for 400 workers as it looks to expand its operations north of the border.

HSBC said its newest office, which is due to open in January, will provide space for the expansion of its Scottish workforce which already stands at more than 3,700 staff working across a range of different business areas and functions.

The Lochside Avenue operation, at Edinburgh Park to the west of the city, will supplement the lender’s existing offices at Lochside Way and Lochside Place on the same business park site.

More than 1,200 HSBC employees already work in the capital and the bank, which serves 17 million customers throughout the UK, where it employs 46,000 people, said it was looking to expand its Scottish headcount over the next couple of years having already increased its employee base in Scotland by 10 per cent over the past 18 months.

Alison McGregor
Alison McGregor

Alison McGregor, chief executive of HSBC in Scotland, said: “HSBC has a clear role to play in supporting the growth of the Scottish economy. We are committed to helping businesses of all sizes grow both internationally and domestically, and helping individuals achieve their ambitions.

“Edinburgh is a dynamic city with a strong financial services industry and a highly skilled workforce. We are delighted to be expanding our presence in Edinburgh with the opening of our new Lochside Avenue office.”

HSBC has joined the likes of Barclays and Santander in targeting a Scottish business and personal banking market traditionally dominated by Lloyds-owned Bank of Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland and the Clydesdale.

News of the expansion in Scotland came as it emerged that HSBC had imposed a 10 per cent pay cut on some of its contractors and asked them to take two weeks unpaid holiday, amid a clampdown on costs.

The move impacts its global and markets investment banking division based in London, and is expected to affect hundreds of workers, from IT staff to analysts and others on fixed-term contracts.

The measure is part of a strategy presented in a June update when the bank promised to cut thousands of posts over the next two years by closing retail branches, shrinking its investment bank and selling its Brazilian and Turkish operations.

HSBC said yesterday: “As a routine practice in global banking and markets we regularly review rates for contractors to ensure alignment with the market and manage costs.”

Group-wide, HSBC operates in 72 countries and territories in Europe, Asia, North and Latin America, and the Middle East and North Africa. l Banks should send their customers a bill each month to help them understand the true cost of their account and shake up competition in the sector, according to the chief executive of TSB. Paul Pester said that at present the true cost of banking for consumers was covered in a “cloak of secrecy”.

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