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Santander bids for 318 Royal Bank of Scotland branches

Spanish financial giant Santander is believed to be the only firm bidder for 318 Royal Bank of Scotland branches up for sale. Parties close to the auction have indicated that a bid of between £1.5 billion and £2 billion has been placed by the Spanish giant which is looking to expand its UK operations as soon as possible. So will Royal Bank of Scotland accept the offer?

The truth is that Royal Bank of Scotland is pretty much between a rock and a hard place purely and simply because other bidders who showed their hand in the early days have fallen by the wayside. Santander is the only firm bidder at this moment in time and with the deadline for offers having passed it looks highly unlikely that any other party will be allowed to join the fray. We should soon find out the exact level of the Santander bid, although with the European Union pushing for a sale of the branches as soon as possible, Royal Bank of Scotland is unlikely to delay a conclusion to the auction.

This marks the first of a number of changes to the UK banking arena which will be almost unrecognisable in the future from the one we saw enter the worldwide recession.

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