Despite 37 Branch Closures, TCF Stands By Grocery Partnership

TCF is closing one of its downtown Minneapolis branches, along with 37 others in Indiana and Illinois that are housed within Jewel-Osco grocery stores; the move will result in up to 200 job cuts.

TCF Financial, the parent company of Wayzata-based TCF Bank, announced Wednesday that it is closing 37 branches in Illinois and Indiana along with one of its Minneapolis branches, resulting in the loss of as many as 200 jobs.
 
The Minneapolis branch on Marquette Avenue, housed in a building adjacent to its namesake TCF Tower, will be absorbed by TCF’s IDS center branch, which company spokesman Mark Goldman said is much more successful, due to heavier skyway traffic.
 
Goldman told Twin Cities Business that all of the job cuts will take place in Illinois or Indiana, and that the bank is inviting the affected employees to apply for open positions at other TCF branches.
 
The branch closures and job cuts will all take place by the end of March. The company said the changes will result in a one-time charge of $7.6 million for its fourth quarter.
 
Three of the 37 branches closing are in Indiana while the rest are located throughout the Chicago area. All of the TCF locations that will close, with the exception of the downtown Minneapolis branch, were housed within Jewel-Osco grocery stores.
 
In March, Eden Prairie-based Supervalu sold Itasca, Illinois-based Jewel-Osco as part of a $3.3 billion deal that included the divestiture of four other grocery store brands.

 
After the deal, TCF warned shareholders that the change in ownership could lead to the closure of certain locations in Jewel-Osco stores, due to the risk of increased costs of operation under the new owner. The company also said that “continued difficult economic conditions, or financial or labor difficulties in the supermarket industry,” could also negatively affect TCF’s supermarket branches.
 
However, Goldman said Wednesday that the Supervalu sale of Jewel-Osco did not influence TCF’s decision to eliminate those locations.
 
“We are not shifting our goals away from our supermarket partnerships—our fundamental focus is on customer convenience,” said Goldman. “We still have more than 115 branches within Jewel-Osco stores and nearly 70 percent of the branches we closed have another TCF branch within five miles.”
 
Thomas Jasper, TCF Bank’s vice chairman of funding, operations, and finance, said in a statement that the company’s arrangement with Jewel remains mutually beneficial.
 
“Our partnership has enabled both TCF and Jewel to grow in the Chicago market over the past 16 years,” Jasper said. “As we prepare to introduce new and expanded product offerings in the coming months, we look forward to creating new motivations for consumers to visit TCF branches inside one of the 118 Jewel-Osco stores.”
 
TCF said the closures followed a review of its portfolio that led the bank to focus more resources on mobile and online banking, new products and services, and more ATM machines.
 
“We determined our customer base at these branches could be served by other nearby TCF locations, enabling us to redirect resources to fund our growth initiatives,” Jasper said.
 
The company said it will install 52 new ATM machines in Chicago “L” train stations throughout the city.
 
Other than the new ATM machines, Goldman said the company’s new products and service enhancements will be forthcoming as it refocuses its resources. Over the past year, the company has introduced two new mobile banking apps that it will continue to update and enhance, he added.
 
TCF currently has 427 branches throughout Minnesota, Illinois, Michigan, Colorado, Wisconsin, Indiana, Arizona, and South Dakota—228 of which are within supermarkets. The upcoming 37 branch closures follow more modest declines in branch counts in recent years. In 2010, the bank had 442 total branches and 234 supermarket branches.

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