Santander makes offer to buy RBS branches: Dow Jones
Spanish banking group Santander has offered the Royal Bank of Scotland 1.8 billion pounds to buy 318 branches of the British financial giant, Dow Jones Newswires reported Monday.
Santander may be the only group to have put its name forward to buy the RBS branches, for the equivalent of 2.2 billion euros or 2.7 billion dollars, when a deadline passes Monday evening, said Dow Jones. RBS declined to comment.
The Spanish group already has 1,300 bank branches in Britain after its takeovers of Abbey in 2004, Bradford and Bingley in September 2008 and Alliance and Leicester in October 2008.
Many have already changed their branding to Santander and the rest will do so by the end of the year.
Dow Jones further reported that Santander initially offered two billion pounds but dropped its offer to 1.8 billion after going over the bank's books.
RBS, which is 83-percent owned by the British government after being bailed out, has until 2013 to sell its branches in line with a demand made by the European Commission in exchange for aid received in the crisis.
© 2010 AFP