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Thursday, 10 February, 2000, 16:51 GMT
NatWest takeover: a chronology
Battle for Natwest
Key dates in the bitter battle for control of one of the UK's biggest financial institutions.

3 Sept 1999: NatWest launches friendly 10.7bn bid for UK unit trust and insurance company Legal & General.

22 Sept: NatWest share price is 26% down as shareholders are unhappy over L&G deal.

24 Sept: Bank of Scotland launches surprise 21bn takeover bid for NatWest.

7 Oct: Bank of Scotland says it has identified 1bn in cost savings from takeover.

8 Oct: NatWest chief executive Derek Wanless steps down.

11 Oct: NatWest officially abandons L&G bid.

27 Oct: NatWest says it will sell off four units, including Ulster Bank, and make job cuts to try to escape takeover.

25 Nov: Government clears Bank of Scotland bid from competition concerns.

29 Nov: Royal Bank of Scotland launches hostile bid for NatWest, saying it had been considering it for some time.

3 Dec: Bank of Scotland approaches NatWest for a friendly merger, and is rejected.

16 Dec: Royal Bank of Scotland bid cleared by government of competition worries, starting 60-day timetable to 14 February deadline.

7 Jan 2000: NatWest gains credibility by appointing Lloyds TSB executive Gordon Pell to head its UK banking operation.

24 Jan: NatWest unveils latest defence, including a 3.5bn share buy-back.

31 Jan: Royal Bank of Scotland and Bank of Scotland both increase their offers.

7 Feb: Lloyds TSB denies rumours it is planning to bid for Royal Bank of Scotland if it loses takeover battle.

9 Feb: Royal Bank of Scotland seizes initiative by securing the backing of major institutional NatWest shareholders.

10 Feb: Bank of Scotland chief executive Peter Burt admits defeat in memo to staff.

11 Feb: NatWest finally gives up the struggle for independence and recommends its shareholders accept Royal Bank of Scotland's 21bn bid. One RBS adviser says: "It would have been more graceful of them to have accepted three days ago."

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