Banking giant HSBC is creating more than 200 jobs in Scotland as it seeks to expand by improving its links to customers.
The bank said the investment in new jobs would help it “better connect with customers” and allow its Scottish business clients to expand at home and abroad.
The move will see HSBC’s corporate banking headcount north of the Border increase by a third. Alison McGregor, chief executive of HSBC in Scotland, said: “HSBC’s role in Scotland is to support growth in the Scottish economy, through helping businesses expand in the UK and overseas, supporting individuals and providing quality employment. This is a very positive sign for Scotland and HSBC.”
It will take on more than 100 new project staff in its “security services” businesses in Glasgow and Edinburgh, and 85 permanent and fixed-term personnel in its Hamilton contact centre.
It will also employ around 20 more people in its corporate banking department across Scotland, and create a new private banking team in Aberdeen.
HSBC said it has seen significant growth in Scotland over the past three years, since it started an expansion drive north of the Border aimed at gaining business at the expense of rivals laid low by the financial crisis.
It has established three large corporate and commercial banking teams in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen, and almost doubled the number of commercial and international banking specialists across these locations.
The bank already employs more than 3,300 people in Scotland, and has increased its branch footprint and headcount as part of a £20 million investment programme. The expansion north of the Border, came during a time when the bank axed more than 40,000 jobs in a cost-cutting drive.
It recently reiterated its pledge to deliver a further
$2 billion (£1.18bn) to $3bn of sustainable annual savings. But unlike other European banks, HSBC has said it has no plans to reshape its investment division.
The news comes amid mounting evidence that the economy is recovering. But small businesses continue to complain that bank loans are hard to come by, while statistics show many lenders are still scaling back their activities.
Bank of England figures showed net lending by banks in its Funding for Lending Scheme shrank by £2.7bn during the first three months of the year.