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Barclays Bank acquires Standard Life Bank

The acquisition of the Standard Life Bank offshoot of Standard Life Insurance for £226 million may be a relatively small acquisition for Barclays Bank but it marks a return to growth for one of the world's largest banks and could herald a new expansion strategy.

Standard Life Insurance is looking to dispose of its banking offshoot due to the fact it is no longer a core operation and with just 287,000 savings accounts and 78,000 mortgage accounts was likely to remain a very small part of the operation. Once the acquisition goes through the bank will be fully incorporated into the Barclays Bank group and benefit from its significant financial backing and experience in the UK and worldwide banking sector.

When you consider that Standard Life Bank has only been in existence since 1998 this is an impressive disposal price when you look at the long history which the majority of banks in the UK are able to boast. It will be interesting to see how Barclays Bank reacts to the ever-changing UK and worldwide banking environment with many suggesting mergers and acquisitions would happen in the short to medium term.

However, whether the authorities around the world would have something to say about this remains to be seen!

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