JPMorgan prepares to pull Chase ATMs from Walgreens stores

Mon Oct 3, 2016 7:33pm EDT
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By David Henry

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A decade after JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N: Quote) said with great fanfare that it would make life easier for customers by putting its cash machines into Duane Reade drug stores in New York City and Walgreens stores in Florida, the big bank is retreating.

Customers who use the ATMs marked with Chase's blue octagon logo in those drug stores are beginning to be met with message: “Soon this machine will no longer be a Chase ATM.”

The new message is the public start of a withdrawal that stems from an agreement the largest U.S. bank by assets made in April to sell 2,586 cash machines - primarily in Walgreens and Duane Reade drug stores, and other retailers - to ATM operator Cardtronics (CATM.O: Quote) for an undisclosed amount.

The exact timing depends on how quickly the machines can be converted for use under the brand name of another financial institution.

The deal includes ATMs in Walgreens in nine states in total, including stores in Arizona and the Chicago area.

Chase spokesman Mike Fusco said the bank is logging off of the ATMs because it will save money and because customers use these particular machines less.

"It really came down to simplifying the business," said Fusco. "Our customers are using those ATMs less frequently given that our ATM presence has expanded significantly over the last 11 years."

Even with the disconnection, Chase will own and operate more than 16,000 ATMs, Fusco said. That is more than twice as many as in 2005 when the bank turned to drug stores to quickly place cash dispensers.   Continued...

JPMorgan Chase ATMs stand near a door as customers walk past a Duane Reade store in New York, U.S., October 3, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson