Virgin Money takes on banks

Published on 1 January 1970 by Raffick Marday

Virgin Money's been in the credit card market for some time, but now Richard Branson's bought his first bank.

He's agreed a deal to buy regional bank Church House Trust for £12.3 million, after a failed attempt to buy now-nationalised Northern Rock two years ago.

Sir Richard says "Virgin Money aims to bring simplicity to the UK banking market, which has traditionally been a complex sector."

It means the company, which has around two and a half million customers, could soon be able to provide current accounts to British customers, as well as savings accounts and mortgages.

Last year Chancellor Alistair Darling called for more competition in the banking sector.

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