Clydesdale IPO delayed amid rating drama

National Australia Bank (NAB) said the IPO of its Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank (CYBG) — which had been planned to go ahead Tuesday — has been delayed by 24 hours due to a request from a rating agency for financial information that may result in a downgrade.

“The Initial Public Offering (IPO) is expected to proceed, with the IPO multiple times covered at 180 pence per CYBG share from international and Australian investors including NAB institutional shareholders,” said NAB.

However, NAB added: “CYBG has received a recent specific request from one of the rating agencies for certain financial information relating to its assessment of Clydesdale Bank’s short- and/or long-term deposit rating.

“The deposit rating is utilised by certain secured funding programmes, which represent 13% of CYBG’s total funding.

The outcome of this assessment could be a near term downgrade of the short- and/or long-term deposit rating or the placing of such rating on credit watch with negative implications.

“CYBG is expected to have a senior standalone investment grade credit rating.”

NAB said CYBG does not anticipate that any downgrade would have any material impact on its ability to raise funding, the overall cost of funding, or its financial outlook.

However, it said “a downgrade of the short- and/or long-term deposit rating would require Clydesdale Bank to take mitigating actions in relation to its existing secured funding programmes.”

“This ratings development may not occur, and should it occur, is not considered material to the financial position and outlook of CYBG,” said NAB.

“However, given the proximity of this request to the IPO, NAB and CYBG have decided to delay finalisation of the IPO for 24 hours.”

Reuters reported on Monday that the London stock market listing of shares in Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank had been priced at £1.80 a share, valuing CYBG at roughly £1.6 billion.

That would be at the lower end of the original wide price range of between £1.75 and £2.35 per share announced for the IPO by NAB in January.

CYBG employs about 4,000 people in Scotland.

NAB is demerging 75% of CYBG to existing NAB shareholders and divesting 25% of shares to institutional investors via the IPO this week.


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