Latest Santander News – Nov, 2015
UBS to Purchase Santander’s Italian Operations
UBS has agreed a deal to purchase the Italian branch of Santander’s wealth management division, a deal which will see them take over the units €2.7bn in assets under management, as well as its private bankers and branch support staff. No price has been announced on either side for the sale.
Based out of Milan, the division of Santander Private Banking provides wealthy individuals and families investment products and advice, alongside the more traditional fare of loans and mortgages. The Swiss bank have not yet announced whether they would rebrand the division under their own colours, but in a statement did say “This transaction is a natural fit with our current wealth management offering in Italy in terms of both business and culture, It also represents a perfect opportunity to grow UBS’s business and to further expand our market share in Italy.”
At present, UBS holds 3.7% of the Italian private banking sector, though with the purchase of Santander’s operations, it should increase that to 4%.
Source: Financial Times
Santander under Fire from Watchdog
Santander are in hot water here in the UK from around 500 mortgage borrowers, who have complained to the independent Financial Ombudsman that the bank is keeping them trapped on a high interest rate and refusing to offer a better deal. It follows previous investigations into Santander’s apparently deliberate policy of forcing those borrowers who are most at risk of falling into arrears to pay the highest mortgage rates.
The Ombudsman, which had placed thee cased on hold whilst it took a broader view on Santander’s policies and operations, is now turning its attention to these 500 complaints. Some of the complaints have been on the table for over two years now, and all the while they’ve been forced into paying these high monthly payments.
One customer saw his monthly cost go from £581 to £749 and finally up to £837 per month, which forced him into arrears with the bank and only grew his debt. After countless hours on the 0844 381 5175 contact number for Santander, he finally gave up and spoke to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
A Santander spokesman said: “The rates available to borrowers change on a regular basis, along with the criteria applied for eligibility. If customers are unhappy with the outcome, we offer them the opportunity to refer to FOS and some will do so.”
PoundWorld Lands £50m Loan from Santander
It’s no big secret that discount retailers like Aldi and Lild are eating up market share in the grocery segment, but did you know that even the lowly pound shop is doing mega trade? Now, one of its biggest chains has won a £50 million loan from Santander to expand even further.
That chain is PoundWorld, and the announcement comes just months after the private equity firm TPG purchased a majority stake in the company for a cool £150 million. The five year loan, it is said, will help the group meet its internal target of opening 60 new stores a year across the UK on top of the 300 stores it currently owns and operates. Elsewhere, the company is also planning the purchase of a new 500,000 square foot distribution centre near its head office in Wakefield to meet demand from stores.
PoundWorld co-founder and current boss Chris Edwards said “Santander’s help two years ago put the business on a firm footing and their support helped us to improve terms with our suppliers, landlords and credit insurers. The business was in a great position to attract the interest of TPG, resulting in its investment earlier this year and, combined with the new facilities from Santander, Poundworld is in a strong position to push forward with its next phase of growth.”