Although the Banco de Costa Rica (BCR) closed 2019 with an increase in profits, last week it announced the closure of five of its branches in the country and the reduction of 20 jobs.

Courtesy BCR

BCR spokeswoman, Hilda Durán, confirmed that this measure is taken in order to “rationalize expenses”.

The branches closed are located in Herradura (Garabito), Malpaís (Central Canton of Puntarenas), Plaza del Sol (Curridabat), Pocora and Río Jiménez (Guácimo).

“Basically, what the bank does is rationalize expenses, so when it sees that some measures have to be taken, it is applied administratively in branches that have a problem,” Durán said.

Regarding the officials who work in the agencies, Durán said that each case will be studied individually to make a decision. In other words, if they will be kept on, relocated to other areas of the bank, or let go.

“These closures are also due to the implementation of a series of innovation and self-management processes, without this leading to increased administrative expenses,” added Durán. “In other cases, when some branches are closed it is because the economic zone of influence tends to suffer some detriment”.

The spokeswoman was asked if the bank plans to continue with this reorganization but did not elaborate.

The bank’s spokesperson also denied that the bank carried out some type of internal restructuring.

According to Duran, the BCR currently has approximately 4,000 employees.

The BCE had a net operating income of ¢46.3 billion colones in 2019 (higher than the industry average of ¢37 billion) and 69% higher than in 2018. The bank closed 2019 with equity of ¢564.85 billion colones.