William T. Sandalls Jr., vice chairman of BayBanks Inc., is leaving the Boston company to join MasterCard International in the new post of chief operating officer, the card association said Monday.

Mr. Sandalls, 47, is an electronic banking luminary who is credited with building an important consumer banking franchise at the New England company.

At MasterCard, he will have broad business and management responsibility and report directly to president Alex W. Hart.

The two executives have known each other since 1982, when they joined with other bankers to create Cirrus System Inc., the international automated teller machine network. Mr. Sandalls is chairman of Cirrus, which MasterCard bought in 1988.

"I've been a director [of MasterCard] for four years and have seen tremendous progress under Mr. Hart's leadership," Mr. Sandalls said.

Mr. Sandalls, BayBanks' chief financial officer, joined the Boston company in 1974 from Arthur Andersen & Co. The electronic banking franchise that he helped build has kept the baking company's earnings relatively stable as many of its New England counterparts faltered under the burden of bad real estate loans.

Big Network

BayBanks owns more than 1,250 automated teller machines, giving it one of the largest proprietary networks in the country. It also was one of the first banking companies to offer ATM frills, such as account statements.

"There are a lot of colleagues at BayBanks that I will continue to stay in touch with," Mr. Sandalls said. "I'm not leaving there without mixed feelings."

BayBanks said in a statement that Michael W. Vasily, a 13-year bank veteran, will replace Mr. Sandalls as chief financial officer. Mr. Vasily is an executive vice president who most recently was chief operating officer of BayBank Middlesex. The company said he was responsible for the recent merger of five Massachusetts bank subsidiaries.

Mr. Sandalls, a New England native, is a graduate of Yale University and the Harvard Business School.

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