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UBS to discard 90% of Credit Suisse tech. Are engineers safe?

If you worked in technology for Credit Suisse and are now working in technology for UBS, today’s UBS results include some nuggets of what looks to be very bad news.

Speaking in the investor call accompanying the results announcement, UBS CEO Sergio Ermotti said Credit Suisse technology is being heavily pruned.

"Of Credit Suisse's 3,000 plus IT applications, only around 300 will be integrated into UBS infrastructure," declared Ermotti. There was no elaboration on which applications UBS will keep, but the 90% being cut will presumably include most applications relating to Credit Suisse’s global markets business, which is bearing the brunt of UBS’s cuts in the investment bank.

The cuts are parts of Ermotti’s plan to take out $10bn in expenses from both banks and to squeeze UBS’s 88% cost ratio back to 70% by 2026.

There are reasons to be positive as a Credit Suisse engineer, though. Firstly, UBS has indicated it values the tech stack by retaining Joanne Hannaford, Credit Suisse's chief technology and operations officer, who was a Goldman Sachs partner before joining in January 2022. Secondly, while the app decommissioning sounds bad at face value, most of the major banks like JPMorgan and Deutsche Bank have been decommissioning applications en masse in the past year without each seeing a noticeable impact on their technology headcounts. UBS itself even raved about its 600 decommissioned applications earlier this year.

UBS doesn't want its technology function to stagnate from the cuts. "We’re going to grow our business, we’re going to invest in technology," said UBS CFO Todd Tuckner, also today. 

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AUTHORAlex McMurray Editor

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