LLOYDS Banking Group could own almost half of pubs group Admiral Taverns following a shake-up of the business, its is claimed.
The part-nationalised bank may write off about £600m in loans to the pubs group in return for nearly 50% of the struggling firm, said newspaper reports.
The bank – 43% owned by the taxpayer – has a reported £855m exposure to debt-laden Admiral Taverns following the bank’s takeover of HBOS.
Admiral Taverns, set up in 2003, embarked on a major expansion programme fuelled by loans from Bank of Scotland – buying up pubs from larger rivals such as Punch Taverns and Enterprise Inns.
It now has about 2,000 leased and tenanted pubs.