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Virgin Money rebrands Northern Rock branches

Banking group Virgin Money has completed the integration of the Northern Rock brand into its business.

The company acquired 75 Northern Rock branches on 1 January 2012 for £747m and promised that the deal would create a “significant new competitor in UK retail banking”.

The rebrand effectively spells the end of the Northern Rock name.

A spokesman for Virgin Money said: “We have been working hard to successfully integrate the Virgin Money and Northern Rock businesses this year.

“All of the branches have been transformed into Virgin Money Stores, the company has now been renamed as Virgin Money plc, and the two websites have been combined into virginmoney.com.”

Completion of the rebranding comes as Virgin Money is reported to be eyeing up the Royal Bank of Scotland’s (RBS) 316 branches after Santander UK pulled out of a deal to buy them.

Richard Branson’s Virgin Money is one of several names reported to be interested in bidding for the banking group’s branches.

US-based private equity firm JC Flowers, founded by Christopher Flowers, and buyout firm NBNK Investments are also said to be considering a bid.

Virgin Money declined to comment on the reports.

Santander UK agreed to purchase the RBS branches in August 2012 but following a series of delays to the deadline have pulled out of the deal.

The sale of the 316 branches was mandated by the European Commission in 2009 as a condition of state aid provided to the group as part of its recapitalization by the government.

Published 15 October 2012

 

 

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