CYBG seals deal for Virgin Money as challengers set to challenge together

Virgin Money and CYBG agree a takeover of £1.7bn, but what does this mean for investors?

Article updated: 18 June 2018 10:00am Author: Graham Spooner

  • CYBG and Virgin Money confirm takeover deal initially announced in May
  • Branson’s Virgin Money is set to be bought for £1.7bn and will give Virgin shareholders a 38% stake in the combined group
  • The Share Centre maintains its ‘hold’ recommendation for Virgin Money

This morning we have had confirmation that Virgin Money has accepted the takeover offer put forward in May from CYBG. Formed out of the union between two other small banks, Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks, the group said it had agreed with Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group to license the Virgin Money brand for £12m a year, rising to £15m later.

Expected to be complete in the final part of the year, the bank takeover will create Britain’s biggest challenger bank. Through the combination of its strengths, complementing Virgin Money’s well recognised brand and CYBG’s strong presence in current accounts and personal banking; the group hopes to disrupt the banking status quo.

It plans to retain the Virgin Money brand and plans to attract the younger customer who is expected to do all their banking digitally. At a time when the banking industry is undergoing significant change due to customer shifts toward digital, the group is set to have a strong digital presence and is bound to be snapping at the heels of the larger banks.

We had seen a modest but positive reaction in Virgin Money’s share price at Friday’s closing as the all-share offer values its share at 371 pence; while CYBG’s remained flat. However, Virgin Money’s progress was offset by CYBG’s poor performance and is now down.

Investors will be casting an eye over the sector potentially looking for further consolidation in the sector; the news also highlights the changing landscape within the banking sector as traditional banks disappear from the high street. Based on the unstable response in the shares and an indefinite outlook as the transition will take place over the next two to three years, it’s difficult to say that this stock is any better than a ‘hold’

All information given including prices, yields and our opinion is correct at the time of publication. Our opinions on investments can change at any time and for our latest view please go to To understand how our Investment research team arrive at their views please read our Investment Research Policy.

Graham Spooner portrait photo
Graham Spooner

Investment Research Analyst

Graham started out as a fully authorised dealer on the Stock Exchange trading floor and for various banks, before becoming an FCA-approved investment adviser. Now a respected voice in the media, Graham’s share tips and comments on the markets are frequently sought by the national press.