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Portman members approve merger with Nationwide

Portman Building Society savers and borrowers have given overwhelming ‘yes’ votes in favour of the merger with Nationwide.

At Portman’s annual general meeting held today, over three times the usual number turned out with 93 per cent of eligible shareholding members and 92.6 per cent of eligible borrowing members voting in favour of the merger.

The merger is subject to FSA confirmation but is expected to be effective from August 28, 2007.

It is expected to result in Nationwide having assets of more than £150bn, creating the UK’s second largest mortgage lender and second largest retail savings provider.

Bonus payments will be mailed to qualifying members within 28 days of this date.

Portman chief executive Robert Sharpe says: “In addition to the merger bonus payment, Portman members will benefit from a greatly increased branch network and access to a wider range of attractively priced products and services.”

Nationwide chief executive Graham Beale says: “I look forward to welcoming Portman members to Nationwide. The enlarged society will be a formidable presence on the high street, competing with the retail banks whilst retaining the benefits of a highly successful mutual. It will deliver real value to its members and provide a compelling alternative to the retail banks.”

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