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Bank of Ireland reviewing sale of Bristol & West branches

Bank of Ireland is looking into the non-mortgage elemets of Bristol & West with plans to shed its 97 branches.

In a review of its UK businesses, it has received expressions of interest in respect of its physical branch network and associated deposit base.

It is believed Alliance & Leicester is in the frame to buy the network. Bank of Ireland paid 600m for the former building society in 1997. The book value is now understood to be around 80m.

Also, Bank of Ireland will be cutting 2,100 jobs, or 12 per cent of the workforce, to counter a decline in the profitability of its lending and the threat of increased competition.

About 80 percent of the job cuts will be in Ireland and the remainder in its U.K. division.

Bank of Ireland media relations manager Anne Mathews says: “We have received a number of expressions of interest and we will be evaluating these.”

Alliance & Leicester was unable to comment.

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