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Tesco Finance linked to bid for Northern Rock

TESCO has emerged as a potential bidder for nationalised bank Northern Rock.<br /><br />Britain&rsquo;s biggest retailer has shown provisional interest alongside private equity funds and Richard Branson&rsquo;s Virgin Group. <br /><br />Tesco is eager to cash in on growing disillusionment with traditional banks and in March announced plans to open bank branches in 30 of its stores. Buying Northern Rock could be another way to enter the banking sector, The Times reports.<br /><br />Northern Rock became Britain&rsquo;s first high profile victim of the credit crunch when it was nationalised in February last year.<br /><br />The government wants to sell the bank before the next general election, due by mid 2010.