When Wingspan Portfolio Advisors purchased JPMorgan Chase’s (JPM) customer service center in Monroe, Louisiana in September 2013, the company gave 400 JPMorgan employees who staffed the Monroe office the opportunity to continue their employment.
Wingspan also promised to bring 900 more jobs to the area.
In October, Wingspan laid off hundreds of employees in the Monroe location, leaving only an estimated 100 employees at the former JPMorgan call center. According to a report from The News-Star in Monroe, Wingspan on Tuesday gave 60-day notices to the roughly 100 employees that still remained at the Monroe location.
“It's unclear how many, if any, Wingspan employees will remain in Monroe,” the News-Star wrote in its report.
Wingspan Senior Vice President of Marketing, Communications and Industry Relations Guy Davis told HousingWire that the layoffs are the result of the company’s lack of projects for the Monroe employees.
“Because of the nature of our services for large financial institutions, we often have to quickly staff large projects and just as quickly wrap up specific contracts,” Davis said in a statement sent to HousingWire.
“Many projects have finite terms or scope, and we try to manage to have replacement projects in place to prevent disruptions in employment, Davis continued. “We currently do not have additional projects for impacted employees to move to at this time and will be reducing staff in Monroe, effective 4/30/15. We are committed to helping our impacted employees find additional work through onsite job fairs and other transition services.”
Wingspan went through several rounds of layoffs last year. In addition to the Monroe layoffs, Wingspan also laid off employees at its Melbourne, Florida location and hundreds of employees at a location in Frisco, Texas.
Additionally, Steve Horne, the founder, CEO and president of Wingspan Portfolio Advisors was replaced as the leader of the company he founded in 2008.
Davis added that Wingspan’s goal is to bring additional projects to the Monroe location.
“Wingspan continues to focus on servicing our existing clients and new clients, and our goal is to bring in additional projects for Monroe, which has consistently been one of our client’s top-rated sites for customer satisfaction,” Davis said. “With our proven success as a component servicer, we offer our clients expertise in HOA services, mortgage claims, modification underwriting, QC and remediation, customer care and other component services.”
Monroe city officials are telling a different story, however.
From the News-Star report:
Dwight Vines, Monroe's economic development officer, said he wasn't given prior notice of Wingspan's latest layoff, but he did say officials from Chase, which still owns the seven-story facility in midtown Monroe, had previously told him to begin marketing the site.
Monroe’s mayor, Jamie Mayo, told the News-Star that he was “deeply disappointed” about Wingspan’s latest round of layoffs.
"My thoughts now are with the people who have lost their jobs, and my hope is that Wingspan can secure the business it needs to restore the jobs and put them back to work," Mayo told the News-Star.