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Britain’s "big four" to take on HBOS for Abbey

Britain’s “big four” to take on HBOS for Abbey

(10 August 2004 – UK) Britain’s largest banks are lining up to launch counter bids for Abbey National if HBOS enters the fray, according to reports in the UK media. Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays, HSBC and Lloyds TSB are all tipped to make an offer for Abbey, the sixth largest bank in Britain, to protect market share from an increasingly competitive HBOS.

Spain’s Banco Santander Central Hispano tabled a bid for £8.6 billion (A$22.2 billion) in July and was favourite to take over Abbey.

According to reports, the Spanish bank’s chairman, Emelio Botin, has promised a price war in the UK if the bid is accepted.

Santander Central Hispano is the biggest bank throughout Latin America as well as Spain.

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