Business is already not going well for one of Quebec’s oldest banks. After a five-day suspension of online services, Laurentian Bank may now experience an exodus of its customers.
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“This is unacceptable to the bank,” said company spokesman Merrick Seguin, who candidly acknowledged the disruption that has affected the company since the beginning.
The service disruption will affect all bank customers who have not disclosed their number for competitive reasons. It boasts of having 460,000 people in 2021.
Everything was back to normal as of Thursday afternoon, he indicated, but this was not the case for the two clients of the firm who were interviewed News magazine.
“It looks promising…” says Jean-Francois Racine, a customer of 25 years. At 2:30pm on Thursday his app was not working.
The trucker worries about missing payments and feels like a hostage. “My appointment in another organization is already done. It’s over for me, I’m removing all my assets from there,” he asserted.
The same goes for Jean-David Senecal, who has been considering leaving the Laurentian bank for some time.
“Knowing they weren’t very healthy already, that was the nail in the coffin. One day’s interruption, okay. But five days? Honestly,” says the 58-year-old, who works in insurance.
Banking services were not available to him even on Thursday afternoon.
Settled as per bank
However, according to Laurentian, the problem is solved. “It’s sure to be gradual, but we’re over it. All customers should have their access back on Thursday,” the spokesperson assured.
Clients’ payments are actually deposited, even if they can’t be seen by everyone, he said. Even old age pension cheques, like benefits from various governments.
All customers who face late fees or any other expenses will be reimbursed, the bank also guarantees. “Nobody’s going to take this out of their own pocket, that’s clear,” Mr. Seguin said.
Great, respond Jean-David Senecal and Jean-Francois Racine, but it’s too little, too late.
Worse and worse
The problem stems from an update to the central system that went wrong on Sunday. After the storm passes Laurentian takes time to analyze everything.
The five-day shutdown is a fresh blow to the smallest of eight Canadian banks already in trouble.
Earlier this year, the company put it up for sale before exiting a transaction.
According to some media, she received at least one buyout offer, but it was not generous enough.
As a result, out of 10 people in that bank, three senior executives were dismissed.
Otherwise, according to many customers, the quality of service to people has been in free fall for years.
Also remember that the company’s CEO is Rania Llewellyn, a monolingual English speaker who is currently learning French. His controversial appointment in October 2020 drew a lot of ink.