Direct Line sale confirmed

Brands such as Direct Line, Churchill and Green Flag are to be sold after owner Royal Bank of Scotland confirmed it was to float its insurance division.

Direct Line RBS

The sale of Direct Line Group was forced on RBS by European regulators as a condition of accepting Government aid in 2008. RBS is majority owned by the state.

DLG has been preparing for the sell-off for more than a year, creating distinct positioning for its brands to increase their value to potential investors.

It recently repositioned Direct Line, switching from price-led to service-based marketing. Churchill ads present it as a straightforward antidote to complex insurance policies offered by others.

About 25% of shares will be offered initially, with more to follow. Analysts have valued DLG at £3bn.

RBS must sell the majority the majority of its stake by the end of 2013 and all of it by the end of 2014.

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