Admiral Group rules out buying Churchill or Direct Line from RBS

ADMIRAL GROUP, the insurer that releases its interim numbers on Wednesday, has dealt a blow to Royal Bank of Scotland’s hopes of finding a trade buyer for Churchill or Direct Line by ruling itself out of any auction.

In an interview with City A.M., Admiral chief executive Henry Engelhardt said: “We don’t think we will be able to buy either of these firms without a lengthy monopolies and mergers investigation. And even if this is passed we think if they are sold to us it will give us such a hefty share of the market, the sellers will make us pay a large premium.”

Engelhardt’s comments will add to expectations that RBS will choose to offload the businesses through IPOs in the next two years.