SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 15, 2006--Washington Mutual Inc.
(NYSE:WM), a leading provider of financial services to consumers and
small businesses, today announced that it would consolidate the
network of processing offices that provide administrative support to
its home loan businesses from 26 to 16 offices.
The action is in keeping with strategies the company outlined at
its annual investor conference last November to revamp its back office
operations from one shaped by acquisitions to one that reflects
current business needs while increasing efficiency companywide. Those
strategies include consolidating real estate and moving back office
functions to lower cost domestic and offshore locations.
In addition, this action reflects the company's ongoing focus on
adjusting the cost structure of its home loans business and
effectively managing capacity to better match current and anticipated
mortgage market conditions.
The consolidation of these offices will result in the elimination
of approximately 2,500 jobs. Work volumes from the impacted locations
will be shifted to 16 remaining Washington Mutual home loan support
offices, including Irvine, California; suburban Chicago; and
Jacksonville, Florida. The job reductions announced today will be
partially offset by new hiring at these locations.
While Washington Mutual continues to drive efficiency through
consolidation of support service locations and other initiatives, it
will also execute strategies designed to fuel profitable growth,
including increasing the number of locations dedicated to sales and
customer service. Last week, the company confirmed plans to open 150
to 200 new retail banking stores nationally in 2006.
With a history dating back to 1889, Washington Mutual is a leading
provider of financial services to consumers and small businesses. At
December 31, 2005, Washington Mutual and its subsidiaries had assets
of $343.12 billion. Washington Mutual currently operates more than
2,600 retail banking, mortgage lending, commercial banking, and
financial services offices throughout the nation. Washington Mutual's
press releases are available at www.wamunewsroom.com.
CONTACT: Washington Mutual
Tim McGarry, 213-217-4003 (Media Contact)
Alan Magleby, 212-326-6019 (Investor Contact)
SOURCE: Washington Mutual