Lloyds TSB to extend 2012 sponsorship across HBOS

LloydsLloyds TSB is expected to extend its sponsorship of the London 2012 Olympic Games to HBOS brands Halifax and Bank of Scotland once the “superbank’s” merger is complete.

A source close to Lloyds TSB Group says it will look at how to extend the sponsorship across HBOS, first through initiatives such as staff and internal marketing, as well as to customers passing through its expanded high street network.

But the bank is unlikely to “Olympify” any of the HBOS brands until it is clear which, if any, of them it must sell in order to offset competition concerns. It is also reviewing the future of all the brands in the HBOS portfolio and may decide to axe some or all of them.

Alongside Halifax, which is the UK’s biggest mortgage lender, and Bank of Scotland, Lloyds TSB will acquire Intelligent Finance, life insurance company Clerical Medical and mortgage brand Birmingham Midshires. Lloyds TSB group brands include Scottish Widows and Cheltenham & Gloucester.

A Lloyds TSB spokeswoman says: “We are at a very early stage of the deal. No decision has been made on the long-term future of the brands, which will affect the 2012 sponsorship as well. Clearly 2012 is positive for the whole group and the whole group can be positive for [the sponsorship].”

Lloyds TSB Group was the first Tier One partner to sign up for the London Olympics, in March last year, paying about £70m to become the official banking partner. It later extended its deal to become official insurance partner of the Games, allowing it to stretch its sponsorship to the Scottish Widows brand.

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