Bloomberg News

Bank of Ireland Agrees to Sell Burdale Division to Wells Fargo

December 20, 2011

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Bank of Ireland Plc, the nation’s largest bank, agreed to sell its Burdale Financial Holdings Ltd. unit to Wells Fargo & Co. for about 690 million euros ($899 million) to reduce its loan book after the country’s bailout.

The lender said it had separately sold a further 2.2 billion euros of loans, to overseas borrowers, without giving more details, according to a statement today. Burdale extends loans secured against assets.

The sales bring the amount of loans sold by the Dublin- based bank this year to 8.6 billion euros. Chief Executive Officer Richie Boucher set a target in April of selling 10 billion euros of assets and running down a further 20 billion euros of loans by 2013. The bank, the only one of Ireland’s six largest lenders to escape majority state ownership, has so far sold its loans for about 7.1 percent less than face value.

Bank of Ireland said losses from its asset-sales program won’t be any worse than the so-called base case scenario set out as part of the bank stress tests in March.

The shares rose 1.3 percent to 7.9 euro cents at 10:25 a.m. in Dublin trading for a market value of 2.4 billion euros.

--Editors: Edward Evans, Francis Harris.

To contact the reporter on this story: Joe Brennan in Dublin at jbrennan29@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Edward Evans at eevans3@bloomberg.net


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