Shareholders in Alliance & Leicester (A&L) have approved its takeover by Banco Santander, the Spanish bank that already owns Abbey.
A&L’s acting chairman Roy Brown told shareholders attending an extraordinary general meeting in Birmingham that the £1.3 billion takeover by Santander was in their best interests given the current market turmoil.
‘There is a regime out there of fear, volatility, contagion – and all of that might increase,’ he told shareholders at Birmingham’s International Convention Centre. ‘We think there is great certainty by being part of a larger organisation. These really are extremely unusual times.’
Which? money editor Martyn Hocking said: ‘Consumers with Alliance & Leicester savings accounts will be reassured that they are now part of a larger group – but they will be hoping that Alliance & Leicester doesn’t allow its customer satisfaction levels to slip as a result of this takeover.
‘Abbey was rated the joint-worst current account provider by Which? members in a customer satisfaction survey carried out in April and May, and was also ranked bottom by Which? members in a savings satisfaction survey that was carried out at the same time.’