Want To Buy A Bank? Lloyds Selling 600 Retail Banks

19th July 2012 Update: Co-op are buying 632 Lloyds bank branches. The Co-op bank will also be taken on the 4.8 million Lloyds customers who will have their accounts transferred to the Co-op. The Co-op will now control around 7% of retail banking current accounts.

If you are in the market for your own retail bank then now is a good time to buy. Lloyds are in the process of contacting possible buyers for 600 of its retail / high street banks which it has been ordered to sell off by regulators.

“We are contacting potential buyers,” Chief Executive Antonio Horta-Osorio told shareholders at the bank’s annual general meeting on Wednesday.

So if you want a high street bank then get in touch with Antonio!

Project Verde

One thing you learn after working in the City is that everything has to have a project name. Project Verde is the name for the selling off of Lloyds banks.

So why is Lloyds selling off 600 banks? Well, it is now partly owned (41%) by the state. It has also been hit with a £3.2 billion fine for mis-selling PPI (payment protection plans) policies. This bill means that Lloyds is now £3.47 billion in debt. Selling 600 retail banks could potentially halve this debt, depending on the value of prime real estate at the moment.

However, it is the European regulators who have demanded that Lloyds sell off 600 branches. It is also thought that 600 branches may just be the beginning, it may well sell more in the future.

At the moment we do not know who is being contacted regarding these retail units. It could be contacts within the leisure industry as city centre banks often provide exciting opportunities for chain pubs such as Weatherspoons who operate in some large ex-banks such as the The Crosse Keys on Gracechurch Street, formerly the HQ of the HSBC and The Standing Order in Edinburgh, which was previously Union Bank of Scotland.

Remember though, the long term plan of the government is to sell off Lloyds and RBS entirely to a third party.


  5 comments for “Want To Buy A Bank? Lloyds Selling 600 Retail Banks

  1. SHP
    July 19, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    Update: Co-op are buying Lloyds branches and taking on Lloyds current accounts.

  2. SHP
    November 4, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    The Co-op has announced that it will be bidding for some of the Lloyds branches. The co-op bank was founded in 1872. It agreed to be merged with Britannia Building Society in January 2009. The co-op is an ethical bank and has in the past closed the accounts of clients who do not support their moral code (Christian Voice had its account closed due to its homophobic stance).

    So far there has only been one bid from NBNK Investments Plc. of £1.5 billion. NBNK have also made a bid for Northern Rock in the last week.

  3. SHP
    May 26, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    Tesco Bank declares an interest in buying Lloyds branches.

  4. SHP
    May 26, 2011 at 9:44 am

    Richard Branson’s Virgin Money is making a bid for the Lloyds branches. This will provide them with their first foothold in the high street banking market. Currently Virgin Money are primarily an online banking business.

  5. CityAnalyst
    May 21, 2011 at 11:14 am

    Sir Win Bischoff, the chairman of Lloyds Bank, says that he is fighting against selling any more than the 600 bank closures agreed already. He says that they have made a deal to close 600 branches and will not allow a single additional bank to close.

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