Citigroup's Citibank division plans to shut its suburban Philadelphia branch network, while leaving Center City offices open, bank officials told me today.
The global bank, based in New York, said last week it would close 13 of its 21 branches in Philadelphia and its Pennsylvania suburbs, along with others in the Boston area and North Jersey, while laying off 11,000 people (5,000 in IT) in a cost-cutting move.
The shutdown list, company officials told me, includes last week's closing of an office in Oxford Valley, and planned March closings of Citi offices in Berwyn, Chester County; in Villanova, Media and Springfield, Delaware County; in Abington, East Norriton, Montgomeryville, Plymouth Meeting, and Willow Grove, Montgomery County; in Doylestown, Southampton and Warrington, Bucks County.
Branches in Bala Cynwyd, Cherry Hill and Trenton will stay open.
Citi is also closing its branch in Philadelphia's upscale Chestnut Hill neighborhood on the northwest edge of the city, but will keep the doors open at its new office near Pulaski and Chelten in grittier Germantown.
Citi is keeping all five Center City branches.
That's because it's now Citi's stated strategy "to be in the world's top cities," which apparently don't include the Main Line or other burbish places. Citi had worked hard to land well-traveled suburban corners with plenty of parking, spending as much as $4 million per office. But, with more people banking digitally, Citi has now decided it's not the millions to keep building out the burbs.