A consortium led by the Royal Bank of Scotland has won the battle to buy the Dutch bank ABN Amro.
About 86% of ABN Amro’s shareholders have accepted a €71 billion ($98.5 billion; £49 billion) offer to clinch Europe’s biggest ever banking takeover. The Royal Bank of Scotland consortium, which also includes Dutch bank Fortis and Spain’s Santander, is now expected to break up the Dutch lender. Last week Barclays withdrew from the bidding war for the bank.
The value of Barclays’ offer fell with its share price this summer amid widespread turmoil in the banking sector, leaving it at a €10 billion disadvantage to the RBS’s mostly cash offer. ABN is now widely expected to be carved up between the members of the RBS consortium. The break-up of ABN will involve 4,500 branches across 53 countries and unravelling businesses ranging from cash management operations in Asia to retail banking in Brazil.
RBS is expected to take its wholesale and investment banking business and its Asian operations while Santander will get ABN’s Italian and Brazilian units, and Fortis its Dutch business and wealth and asset management operations. „For Royal Bank of Scotland it looks more of a challenge, especially as it is acquiring the business most affected by the recent market turbulence,” said Bear Stearns analyst Christopher Wheeler. (BBC News )