Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Hold on to your kilts - RBS wants LaSalle, too

Not shockingly, RBS, together with Fortis and Santander has countered the Barclay's offer for ABN Amro with a $98.5 billion offer. The difference? No sale of the LaSalle Bank operations to B of A.

Having never dealt with them on a deal, I don't know much about RBS as a commercial real estate lender or otherwise. I only know that Jack Nicklaus is a major media pitch man for the bank, so much so that a £5 RBS note with his picture was issued a couple of years ago, which is a singular honor so far as I know.

Business Week seems to think that RBS has the better offer, and while I liked the B of A idea, one thing may bode well for Chicagoans: there may be fewer local layoffs as a result, although there may be a bloodbath in Europe as the plan appears to be to break ABN up among the consortium. Either way, LaSalle is a trophy property that both banks need to fill a gap in the Midwest.