JPMorgan is in talks to buy a new building in Dublin, but has told London staff it will not “rush into any decisions” on how it will adjust its operations after Brexit.
Bloomberg reported that the US bank was in talks to buy a 130,000 sq ft office in the centre of the Irish capital which could accommodate about 1,000 people. The bank declined to comment.
The news comes as international banks scour Europe for new bases in the aftermath of the UK’s decision to quit the EU, which is likely to force banks to pull some business out of London.
JPMorgan’s investment bank head Daniel Pinto and wealth management boss Mary Erdoes told staff on Wednesday that the bank was still assessing its options for life after Brexit.
“We have spent the last several months reviewing the many variables in this process — client needs, employee considerations, regulatory requirements, operational risks, our inventory of licences, political issues in the region and dozens of other factors.
“This is a complex process and we will not rush into any decisions,” they wrote in a memo sent on the day that the UK formally began the process of quitting the EU.
They stressed that JPMorgan’s existing EU footprint — one of the broadest of any US bank — means that “we have choices in terms of locations and legal entity structure” and the bank was “well placed” to continue to serve its EU clients.
The bank employs 16,000 people in the UK. It has licences scattered across the EU including Dublin and Frankfurt, two of the leading destinations which JPMorgan and other banks are likely to move some operations to in the aftermath of Brexit.
The new Dublin building is at Capital Dock in the city’s docklands area, close to the International Financial Services Centre which has long been home to international banks and the Central Bank of Ireland’s new building on Dublin’s north quay.
It is being sold by developers Kennedy Wilson and Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency. Kennedy Wilson could not immediately be reached for comment; Nama, which holds a minority stake in the project, declined to comment.
JPMorgan had warned before Brexit that as many as 4,000 of its jobs could leave the UK if the country quit the EU. Earlier this month Jamie Dimon, chief executive, said the bank was “still guessing at this point” on whether the number of jobs moved would be zero, 3,000 or 4,000.
Last week, Goldman Sachs International head Richard Gnodde told CNBC his bank expected to create “hundreds” of jobs in the EU in the first phase of its reaction to Brexit. “It’ll be a combination of things; we’ll hire people inside of Europe itself and there will be some movement (from the UK),” he said. Goldman employs about 6,000 people in London.
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