RBS confirms sale of Angel Trains
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has confirmed it has sold Angel Trains to a consortium led by Babcock & Brown, the Australian infrastructure group.
The sale, which values Angel Trains’ debt and equity at about £3.6 billion, is expected to deliver a profit of £250-£300 million to RBS. The sale forms part of RBS’ plans to shore up its balance sheet and concentrate on its main banking business.
The sale is expected be completed by the end of the year.
The bank’s capital reserves have been stretched by the credit crisis and its involvement in the break-up bid for ABN Amro, the Dutch bank.
Angel Trains was formed by the UK Government in 1994 as part of the privatisation of British Rail.
The sale has brought a good profit for RBS. It purchased Angel Trains back in December 1997 for £408 million from a shareholder group led by Japanese bank, Nomura.
In addition to Angel Trains, RBS is in the midst of selling its UK insurance subsidiary, which owns the Direct Line and Churchill brands.
Furthermore, it is close to raising £1 billion by selling its share of a joint venture with supermarket giant, Tesco.
Angel owns around 5,000 locomotives and coaches, including regional, commuter and high speed passenger trains and freight locomotives, to passenger and freight operators in the UK and Europe.
It has offices in London and Derby and runs a European subsidiary, Angel Trains Cargo, from offices in Antwerp in Belgium.