Northern Rock and UKFI Begin Sale Adviser Selection

Jan. 17 (Bloomberg) -- U.K. Financial Investments Ltd. and Northern Rock Plc, the government-owned savings and mortgage bank, this week begin work to select an adviser for a possible sale of the company.

“An adviser will be appointed to work with UKFI and Northern Rock to evaluate strategic options for the company,” Brian Giles, a spokesman, said in a telephone interview today.

Northern Rock was nationalized in February 2008 after a shortage of funding the previous year made it the first U.K. bank to suffer a run in more than a century. In November, Northern Rock Chief Executive Officer Gary Hoffman left the bank to join NBNK Investments Plc, which aims to build a bank through acquisitions of entities such as Northern Rock.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp. have been contacted to prepare for a possible sale, the Sunday Telegraph reported yesterday. Giles declined to comment.

UKFI is charged with managing the government’s holdings in British banks, which include 83 percent of Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and 41 percent of Lloyds Banking Group Plc.

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