RBS sells £500m Direct Line stake

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ROYAL Bank of Scotland surrendered control of Direct Line yesterday after completing the sale of £500 million worth of shares in the insurer.

The bank – which was forced by the European Commission to sell its insurance business after accepting a bailout from the UK government during the financial crisis – has been left with a 48.5 per cent stake in Direct Line after announcing the sale of the shares on Tuesday night.

RBS sold 252.3 million shares at 201p each. equivalent to a 15.3 per cent stake in the insurer. Its gross proceeds from the sale were £507m.

Bruce Van Saun, group finance director at RBS, 
said: “We are pleased with the performance of Direct Line Group since the initial public offering (IPO) in October.”