NatWest sells €55m shares in Ireland’s Permanent TSB

NatWest-RBS CEO Alison Rose

NatWest Group and the government of Ireland each sold a 5% stake in Permanent TSB Group and will receive €55.2 million of gross proceeds each.

The move marks the start of a disposal process that will see the last of Ireland’s retail banks returned to private ownership following giant bailouts during the financial crisis.

NatWest CEO Alison Rose said:  “This transaction represents further positive progress on our phased withdrawal from the Republic of Ireland.”

NatWest, formerly known as RBS, said it “will keep further disposal options under active consideration, as and when market conditions permit.”

The sale of the shares reduces the Irish state’s holding in Permanent TSB to 57.4%, while NatWest will retain about 11.7%.

The shares were sold at €2.025 a share — a 7.95% discount to Thursday’s close.

NatWest said in a stock exchange statement: “The overall size of the disposal by the Minister for Finance of Ireland and NatWest was 54.6 million ordinary shares in PTSB representing 10.0% of the ordinary share capital of PTSB, with NatWest disposing of 27.3 million ordinary shares in PTSB representing 5.0% of the ordinary share capital of PTSB …

“The selling shareholders have undertaken not to sell further shares in PTSB for a period of 90 calendar days following the completion of the placing (subject to waiver by one of the co-bookrunners and certain customary exceptions).”