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Selling part of the Queen’s bank: Ashurst and Slaughters advise on RBS sale of Coutts International

Ashurst and Slaughter and May have won lead roles advising on the Royal Bank of Scotland’s (RBS) sale of its overseas private banking and wealth management business to Union Bancaire Privée (UBP).

Ashurst represented RBS on the disposal which includes the international aspects of Coutts and Adam & Company. The law firm used a cross-border team with the lawyers drawn from the firm’s London, Paris, Singapore, Hong Kong, Abu Dhabi and Dubai offices. The team was led by London-based corporate partner Nick Cheshire, with partner Crowley Woodford advising on employment, tax partner Paul Miller, and partner Mark Lubbock on advising commercial aspects.

Also advising the bank were partners Hubert Blanc-Jouvan in Paris, Keith McGuire in Singapore, Angus Ross and Peter Kwon in Hong Kong, and Alastair Holland in the Middle East. Homburger advised on Swiss law matters.

Slaughter and May represented Swiss bank UBP alongside Lenz & Staehelin which provided counsel on Swiss law.

The sale includes relationships managed from Switzerland, Monaco, UAE, Qatar, Singapore and Hong Kong and assets under management worth around CHF32bn (£20.8bn) on 31 December 2014. The initial close is expected in Q4 2015 when the majority parts of the business will transfer. The remainder will transfer in the first half of 2016.