U.S. Bancorp (USB) could soon have a much larger presence in the Second City.
The Minneapolis company has inked a deal to buy 105 Chicago-area branches of Citizens Financial Group, the U.S. bank owned by Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, Crain's Chicago Business reported Monday. Crain's, citing an unnamed source, said the deal is expected to be priced at roughly $300 million and could be made public as early as Tuesday.
The acquisition of the branches, which are branded Charter One Bank, would more than double U.S. Bancorp's presence in Chicago. At June 30, the $361 billion-asset company had 90 branches and $6 billion in deposits.
A spokesman for U.S. Bancorp declined to comment on "marketplace rumors or speculation."
If true, U.S. Bancorp would be bucking an industry trend following the financial downturn of 2008. Observers say big banks are essentially barred from acquisitions and many of the megabanks have been selling massive swaths of branches rather than acquiring new ones.
Rumors about a potential sale of the branches have persisted at least since 2008 when RBS was nationalized by the United Kingdom. In early 2013, RBS announced it would sell a portion of Citizens Financial Group in an initial public offering. In November, it said it would fully divest the U.S. company by 2016. Citizens Financial is based in Providence, R.I.