RBS announce profits of £3.1bn and will rebrand as NatWest Group

The Royal Bank of Scotland Group has today announced that they have almost doubled its annual profits to £3.1bn (up from £1.6bn), and will be rebranding as the NatWest Group.

Currently, the bank has several customer brands including RBS, NatWest, Ulster Bank, Coutts, Lombard and Drummonds – and they will all be under the new NatWest Group plc banner by the end of the year. Prior to the announcement, the NatWest brand accounted for 80% of the bank’s customer base.

In a statement released this morning, the bank said: “We have announced that we plan to change the name of our parent company to NatWest Group plc. We expect the name change will take effect later this year.

“This is the right time to align our group name with the brand under which the majority of our business is delivered. NatWest represents approximately 80% of our customer base.

“Customers will see no change to products or services as a result of this change and will continue to be served through the brands they recognise today, including NatWest and Royal Bank of Scotland.”

RBS reported an operating profit before tax of £4.2bn and an attributable profit of £3,1bn and proposed a final ordinary dividend of 3 pence and a 5 pence special dividend.

RBS was rescued by the government in 2008 in the aftermath of the global financial crisis at a reported cost of more than £45bn. The group is still 62% state-owned.

However, in a challenging market RBS has exceeded all of its 2019 financial targets: cost reduction above target; net lending growth ahead of target; RWAs below guidance; and 22 pence of total distributions to shareholders in 2019, while maintaining a CET1 ratio of 16.2%.

CEO Alison Rose said: “Today marks the start of a new era for our bank as we announce our new purpose – to champion potential, helping people, families and businesses to thrive. These results are a reminder of the strong foundations we have built. Our profits are up, our capital remains strong and this year we will have returned a further £2.7bn to our shareholders. But our performance doesn’t yet match the potential that exists in this bank. We can deliver so much more.

“The way people live their lives has changed. And their expectations of companies are changing too; looking for us to deliver not only financial performance but a positive contribution to society; benefitting customers and communities as well as shareholders. The future of this bank depends on us successfully delivering on both. I am hugely excited about the opportunities that lie ahead of us.”