21 Mar 2024

Nationwide Building Society confirms offer for Virgin Money UK PLC and extends Branch Promise

  • Deal to deliver greater value to Nationwide members and access to wider range of services over time.
  • Branch Promise extended by two years.

Nationwide announces today that it has agreed the terms of a recommended cash offer with Virgin Money’s Board for the Virgin Money business.

Nationwide believes that the acquisition will create a financially stronger building society with returns that will deliver greater value to its members, including savings and lending rates that are, on average, better than the market average.

Nationwide’s Board agreed that a binding offer to acquire Virgin Money was in the best interests of the Society, and its present and future members, following full consideration and the appropriate due diligence, and after taking comments from members into account.

The deal will bring an established business banking service within the Nationwide Group, and the benefits of fairer banking and mutual ownership to more people in the UK.

Nationwide will continue to focus on providing leading levels of customer service. It has today announced that it will also extend its Branch Promise by another two years so that everywhere it has a branch, it promises to still be there until at least the start of 2028. Should Nationwide be successful in buying Virgin Money, the Promise will also apply to Virgin Money branches, following the completion of any existing Virgin Money branch closure plans.

Debbie Crosbie, Nationwide’s Chief Executive said: “This acquisition strengthens Nationwide and means we can offer more value and broader services for our current and future members. More people will experience the benefits of mutual ownership and the customer-focused approach of a building society. This includes Nationwide’s unique Branch Promise, which we are extending until at least the start of 2028. The Promise will also apply to Virgin Money branches.”

Nationwide believes that the acquisition will enable Nationwide to accelerate its strategy and broaden and deepen its products and services faster than could be achieved on its own.

Kevin Parry, chairman of Nationwide said: "Following full consideration and the appropriate due diligence, and after taking comments from members into account, the Board of Nationwide’s assessment is that the binding offer to acquire Virgin Money is in the best interests of the Society and its present and future members.”

The joint statement by the boards of Nationwide and Virgin Money has confirmed that the agreed offer price is a total of 220p per Virgin Money share.

Nationwide has also confirmed that its Chief Financial Officer, Chris Rhodes, will become the CEO of Virgin Money once the acquisition is complete and Virgin Money’s current CEO steps down. Muir Mathieson, Nationwide’s Deputy CFO and Treasurer, will become CFO of Nationwide. Both appointments are subject to regulatory approval and will report directly into Debbie Crosbie.

Additional information

For more details see the Nationwide website.


FGS Global (public relations adviser to Nationwide) +44 (0)20 7251 3801
James Murgatroyd
Charlie Chichester
Richard Webster-Smith
Sophia Johnston

Notes to editors

Nationwide Building Society

Nationwide is the world’s largest building society, with over 17 million customers, 16 million of whom have a current account, mortgage or savings product, and are therefore members of the Society. Nationwide is owned by its members and focuses on providing banking products and services to its customers. Nationwide has over 18,000 employees, including those based in its headquarters in Swindon, and those working in its network of over 600 branches across the UK.

Following the Acquisition, Nationwide will remain a building society.

Nationwide is the UK’s third largest mortgage provider and holds almost £1 in every £10 saved in the UK, as well as one in ten of the UK’s current accounts. It also supports landlords and those who rely on the private rented sector for their long-term housing needs through its buy to let business, The Mortgage Works. In addition, Nationwide offers a comprehensive range of wider retail financial services and products, including credit cards, personal loans and insurance. These offerings diversify its income, and help it give value back to its customers, through better product pricing than the market average and better service than its peers.

Nationwide’s purpose is ‘Banking – but fairer, more rewarding, and for the good of society’. The Nationwide Board believes that its mutual ownership model enables it to balance its need to retain sufficient profit to remain financially strong, with its commitment to share its success with its customers and members.

Virgin Money plc

Virgin Money is a Tier 1 bank with c.6.6 million retail and business customers across the UK, bringing the best of the “Virgin Money” brand to make banking better and enable customers to achieve their financial goals. Led by its purpose of ‘making you happier about money’, Virgin Money offers a range of straightforward, award-winning products including current accounts, credit cards, savings, investments, mortgages, pensions, loans and more.

Rewarding, digital-first customer experiences are central to its ambition of becoming the UK’s best digital bank, supported by a network of stores, contact centres and relationship managers. Through the Virgin Money Foundation and key partnerships, the bank also delivers positive change in society as part of its progressive sustainability and ESG agenda.

An inclusive and ambitious culture for approximately 7,300 full time equivalent colleagues is fostered throughout the organisation, encouraging colleagues to work in a healthy, flexible, digitally led environment. Headquartered in Glasgow with major offices in Newcastle upon Tyne and London, Virgin Money is a FTSE 250 company, dual-listed on the London Stock Exchange (VMUK) and the Australian Securities Exchange (VUK).

Branch Promise

The Branch Promise ensures the Society is protecting branches and we will only close a branch when we absolutely need to, for example a lease expiry enforced by the landlord.

Executive Changes

Chris Rhodes.

Chris Rhodes was appointed Chief Financial Officer of Nationwide in October 2019, having been a board member since 2009. He has extensive financial services experience with over 30 years in retail and commercial banking, including in senior leadership roles across finance, treasury, operations, retail distribution and risk management.

Chris has significant experience of leading large teams through transformational change that deliver value for customers.

Chris’s previous positions include Group Finance Director of Alliance and Leicester Group, Board Director at Visa Europe and Deputy Managing Director for Girobank. Chris is a chartered accountant.

Muir Mathieson

Muir was made Deputy CFO by Nationwide in early 2023 and has been Group Treasurer since January 2020. He is responsible for the management of capital, liquidity and market risks, including wholesale market issuance, investor relations, balance sheet hedging, management of the liquidity buffer, funds transfer pricing, ICAAP, ILAAP and Recovery & Resolution.

Muir has been at Nationwide for almost 14 years in a variety of leadership roles across Finance and Strategy. Prior to Nationwide, Muir worked at Barclays Capital and Morgan Stanley in trading and product control roles, and at Chelsea Building Society managing financial risk. He started his career at PwC in Financial Services audit in 1996 and is a qualified chartered accountant.