JPMorgan wants to open 500 branches in next 3 years

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JPMorgan Chase plans to add more than 500 branches to its footprint by 2027, with a focus on underrepresented areas, the bank said Tuesday, according to a statement seen by Reuters and The Wall Street Journal.

Wall Street’s biggest bank wants to open new branches in Boston, Charlotte, Minneapolis, Philadelphia and the area surrounding Washington D.C., the company said. 

JPMorgan, with roughly 5,000 branches, in recent years, surpassed Wells Fargo as the U.S. bank with the largest brick-and-mortar footprint.

“It is a love affair with branches, just to be totally clear,” Jennifer Piepszak, co-CEO of JPMorgan’s commercial and investment bank, told analysts last year, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The new branches will feature a consultation area for customers to have private conversations — shifting its focus from the usual teller line, Jennifer Roberts, JPMorgan’s consumer-banking CEO, told Reuters.

“Our branch network is one of the key reasons that customers open accounts with us, and it has helped us attract deposits,” Roberts told the wire service. “We really view our branches as a storefront for the entire company, and it is an anchor for us to expand our relationship with customers as we aim to be their primary financial partner.”

The bank did not specify the amount being invested in the project.

JPMorgan also intends to renovate roughly 1,700 of its existing branches across the country and hire around 3,500 employees for its branch network, it said. The lender’s global headcount stood at 309,926 at the end of December, according to Reuters.  

JPMorgan holds a branch share of less than 5% in 17 top markets and is eyeing expansion, Marianne Lake, the bank’s CEO of consumer and community banking, said at an investor conference in December. 

In an executive shuffle last month, Lake was appointed the sole head of the consumer division, which she previously led with Piepszak.

As part of its growth strategy, JPMorgan has added 650 branches in the past six years and became the first U.S. bank to have branches in all 48 contiguous states, according to The Wall Street Journal. 

JPMorgan’s effort comes as some banks are streamlining their operations and shrinking their physical presence. There were 77,690 total active bank branches as of October, according to S&P Global data. U.S. banks closed 123 branches and opened 80 that month.

JPMorgan plans, however, to shut down 30 of the roughly 60 branches that remain from the First Republic Bank footprint it bought last year, Roberts told Reuters. Soon after the acquisition, JPMorgan announced it would close 21 of the bank’s 84 locations by the end of 2023.

“Branches have been a winning strategy for us that is helping us capture more market share,” Roberts told Reuters in December.

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