FleetBoston Financial Corp. said Friday that it will close 80 branches and one drive-through banking facility to eliminate overlap resulting from its purchase this month of Summit Bancorp, of Princeton, N.J.
The affected locations all in New Jersey include 47 FleetBoston branches, 33 former Summit branches, and a FleetBoston autobanking location, the company said Friday.
Rena DeSisto, a FleetBoston spokeswoman, said it considered several factors in deciding which branches to close, including the distance between branch locations. Each branch to be closed is located an average of half a mile from one that will remain open, she said.
FleetBoston also examined overlapping customer trade areas, convenience, service, features available, and the upgrade capabilities at the remaining branches, she said.
The company said it expects to begin closing the Summit branches on July 12 and the Fleet branches on July 27, after completing a 90-day notification period for customers. Most of the branches to be closed are in Atlantic, Bergen, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, and Somerset counties.
FleetBoston also said it does not expect the shutdowns to cause any layoffs. Branch employees will be offered jobs with Fleet at nearby branches, T. Joseph Semrod, New Jersey chairman for the company, said in a press statement issued Friday.
When FleetBoston announced its $7 billion stock deal for Summit in October, it said it expected to consolidate 70 to 85 branches, Ms. DeSisto said. After the 80 branches are closed, the $200 billion-asset company will have 1,700 branches in the Northeast, including 446 in New Jersey.
By acquiring Summit, FleetBoston became the largest banking company in market share in New Jersey. Previously it ranked fourth in the state.
FleetBoston and Summit divested seven branches with deposits of $200 million late last month to comply with a government mandate. Richmond County Financial Corp. of Staten Island, N.Y., bought two branches on Staten Island from FleetBoston and five in Atlantic County, N.J., from Summit.