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South Africa's Standard Bank to close 91 branches, cut some 1,200 jobs

Standard Bank Group Ltd. will shutter 91 branches and reduce headcount by about 1,200 in a bid to reduce costs.

The South African lender said the majority of those branches will be closed by June, adding that the estimated number of employees to be laid off could be lower as new opportunities will become available under its new operating model.

The bank added that it will provide affected staff with a comprehensive exit package that "significantly exceeds" legal requirements.

Standard Bank said the move is in response to the increasing number of customers opting to access its banking products and services online instead of visiting branches. It also comes amid increasing competition from new digital entrants in the South African banking landscape.