LONDON (Reuters) - The bad bank charged with winding down the assets of two failed British lenders will sell a 15.65 billion pound mortgage portfolio in two or three transactions starting this year, the group’s incoming boss said on Tuesday.
UK Asset Resolution, which is selling off the loans from bailed-out Bradford & Bingley, is aiming to find a buyer for the portfolio to speed up the repayment of taxpayers’ money.
The British government spent 133 billion pounds bailing out banks and has so far recouped about 76.8 billion, according to a report by the Treasury in March.
Credit Suisse has been hired to advise on the sale, with private equity firms and banks among those that may bid for the bundle of loans. “It is a complicated process, it is a very big book,” said Ian Hares, who is due to replace Richard Banks as chief executive of the bank. “We are looking for a first round expression of interest and then moving on to a short list.”
Chancellor George Osborne is keen to sell the government’s banking assets to recoup taxpayers’ money splashed out in a bailout of troubled lenders during the 2007-2009 financial crisis.
Britain last year sold 13 billion pounds of loans once held by former mortgage lender Northern Rock to U.S. private equity firm Cerberus [CBS.UL], marking the biggest ever sale of a book of loans in Europe.
Richard Pym, the bad bank’s chairman, also announced he is stepping down from the organisation and will be replaced by John Tattersall, a non-executive director.
UK Asset Resolution reduced the size of its balance sheet by a further 22.8 billion pounds during the year ending March. That means assets worth 72.8 billion pounds have been shed since UKAR’s formation from its 115.8 billion balance sheet in 2010.
Reporting by Andrew MacAskill, editing by Louise Heavens