Outlook: Wanless close to landing his deal
Friday 03 September 1999
For choice, the City would have much preferred another straight banking consolidation, with its mouth-watering potential for cost cutting. But since the Government has made plain that's pretty much out of the question for the time being, it's going to have to make do with more bancassurance.
Mr Wanless has timed his move well. Sir Brian Pitman at Lloyds-TSB is too preoccupied with seeing that deal through his acquisition of Scottish Widows to want to spoil Mr Wanless's party. Meanwhile, Barclays is busy tacking up the bunting for the reception party of its colourful new chief executive, Matt Barrett. Mr Wanless is also going to be able to sell the deal as one done from a position of strength.
NatWest is a very different animal from the bruised and battered beast that nearly rushed into the arms of a more than willing Prudential. Had Mr Wanless done the deal that Sir Peter Davis was urging on him, or indeed agreed to merge with Abbey National - with which NatWest also talked seriously at that time - NatWest would have been seen as very much the junior partner.
It is a measure of how successfully Mr Wanless has turned around the bank's City standing that he is able to persuade someone of the calibre of David Prosser that NatWest can add something to a group as successful at what it does as L&G. It also shows how much the Lloyds deal with Widows has changed the dynamics of the marketplace.
Until recently, Mr Prosser was a staunch defender of the group's independence, despite some rumoured offers from the likes of Lloyds, Aegon, the Dutch insurer, and others. A consummate operator to the last, he is smart enough to detect which way the wind is blowing and act accordingly.
- 1 Jennifer Lawrence scores first UK top 40 single with Hunger Games track 'The Hanging Tree'
- 2 Shia LaBeouf claims he was raped during #IAMSORRY art installation performance
- 3 'You should come to my house and eat cheeses with me': 4-year-old sends adorable love letter to girl at school
- 4 Scientists predict green energy revolution after incredible new graphene discoveries
- 5 Michael Buerk wishes he killed Jimmy Savile when he had the chance - by pushing him overboard a cruise ship
Obama: The only people with the right to object to immigration are Native Americans
Ukip says babies born to immigrants in the UK should be classed as migrants – which would include Nigel Farage’s own children
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
David Cameron sets out immigration reforms: We should distrust Ukip and their 'snake-oil of simple solutions'
Ukip mocked after mistaking Westminster Cathedral – for a mosque
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
iJobs Money & Business
Excellent Package: Austen Lloyd: EAST ANGLIA - SENIOR SOLICITOR LEVEL ROLE** -...
£Attractive Package: Citifocus Ltd: Prestigious asset management house seeks a...
£Negotiable: Citifocus Ltd: This is a varied role focusing on the firm's mutua...
£90000 - £140000 per annum + benefits: h2 Recruit Ltd: Are you a high achievin...