National Australia Bank (NAB) today confirmed it will float off a stake in Yorkshire and Clydesdale Bank in February.
The lender is to be demerged from its Australian parent through a flotation on the London Stock Exchange.
The sell-off had been expected to take place before the end of this year but will now happen in early February, with institutional investors being offered 25 per cent of the shares.
The remaining 75 per cent will be held by existing NAB shareholders, who will receive one share for every four they hold in the Melbourne-based group.
NAB chairman Michael Chaney said: “Having assessed a number of alternatives, the NAB board considers the demerger – in conjunction with the opportunity to undertake the IPO – is the best exit option and is likely to enhance value for NAB shareholders over the long term.”
Group chief executive Andrew Thorburn added: “Following the demerger, NAB is likely to benefit through a combination of improved return on equity and capital generation given the higher profitability and returns currently generated from NAB’s core Australia and New Zealand businesses.”
The NAB board considers the demerger – in conjunction with the opportunity to undertake the IPO – is the best exit optionMichael Chaney
Yorkshire and Clydesdale’s annual report, published last month, showed its new chief executive, David Duffy, was awarded a £500,000 signing-on bonus when he joined the lender in June, giving him a total pay package of £1.35 million in his first few months in the job.
Mr Duffy is due in Australia this week to meet investors. He said: “This is another important step towards becoming independent for our Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank brands. We will be able to shape our own strategy, build a better bank for our customers, and deliver long-term and sustainable growth for our shareholders.
“We already have a strong customer franchise and now we have a great opportunity to challenge the market with enhanced products and outstanding customer service.”