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Business

Employees of Santa Barbara Bank & Trust Receive Layoff Notices

About 470 employees to lose their jobs; parent company Pacific Capital Bancorp's merger with Union Bank is nearing completion

About half of Santa Barbara Bank & Trust employees will lose their jobs over the next twelve months as a result of the company’s purchase by Union Bank, which will merge the workforces of the two companies.

About 470 positions will be eliminated over the course of the next 12 months, according to Dan Weidman, Union Bank spokesman.

Union Bank will retain 570 SBBT employees, including most customer-facing positions across the bank, and 80 percent of those whose positions have been eliminated will not depart the bank until at least April 30, 2013, Weidman said.

He added that Union Bank has 175 open positions from Los Angeles to San Jose for which impacted employees can apply.

SBBT’s parent company, Pacific Capital Bancorp, was purchased by Union Bank, the primary subsidiary of San Francisco-based UnionBanCal Corp., earlier this year for $1.5 billion. 

Saturday is the date UnionBanCal anticipates a legal closing date for the transaction.

Yesterday, SBBT officials confirmed the layoffs, but could not be specific about the number of jobs lost.

“Employees are being notified of their employee status throughout the state this week,” said Debbie Whiteley, vice president of public affairs for Pacific Capital Bancorp, SBBT’s parent company.

Weidman told Noozhawk earlier this month that he couldn’t speak to which Santa Barbara Bank & Trust employees would keep their jobs in the merger.

“When two banks merge and combine their operations, there is almost always duplication of employee positions,” Weidman said. “Decisions regarding employees will be made very carefully and in consultation with Santa Barbara Bank & Trust management. However, at this time it would be premature to talk about employment status.”

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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