NBNK confirms bid to buy Lloyds TSB branches

Sign outside a Lloyds TSB branch in London
Image caption Lloyds Banking Group has until the end of 2013 to sell the 632 branches

New banking venture NBNK Investments has confirmed that it has made a bid to buy 632 Lloyds Banking Group branches.

NBNK did not reveal the value of its offer, but the BBC understands it is about £1.5bn.

Lloyds is being forced to sell the branches by European Commission competition authorities.

NBNK, which was co-founded by Lord Levene, chairman of insurer Lloyd's of London, said there was "no certainty that a transaction will be completed".

Lloyds has been given until the end of 2013 to dispose of the branches.

Two other potential bidders have been linked with the Lloyds disposal: Co-operative Financial Services and Sun Capital, a US investment firm.

Lloyds is having to sell the branches as a result of it needing state-aid from the UK government, which currently still holds a 41% stake in the bank.

The branches being sold include some of Lloyds' main Lloyds TSB brand, plus Cheltenham & Gloucester and Halifax outlets.

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