RBS Citizens Financial Group is reportedly preparing to auction off its Charter One Bank franchise in Chicago.
Citizens bought Charter One in 2004 for $10 billion. Today the franchise has $6 billion in deposits and operates more than 100 branches. Citizens has hired Bank of America Merrill Lynch to handle the sale of Charter One, according to Crain’s Chicago Business. A Citizens spokesman declined to comment on the report Friday.
“Charter One was a troubled institution when they bought it,” said Richard Bove, a bank analyst and vice president of equity research at Rafferty Capital. “It became another problem in a company that has a lot of problems.”
Citizens is owned by the Royal Bank of Scotland Group, which was taken over by the British government in a bailout during the financial crisis. The Scottish bank has been pressured by British officials to sell Citizens to repay taxpayers.
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