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Barclays in talks on 135 BMPS branches

Source: Reuters - Thu 15th Oct 2009

Britain's Barclays Plc is in talks to buy 135 Italian branches from Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, a person familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

A deal is not imminent and the UK bank is also in talks to buy branches from other banks as it builds up its Italian footprint, the source said.

Talks have been on and off for some time, with price the main issue. Some months ago Barclays made an offer for the BMPS branches at around 3 million euros ($4.47 million) and is now ready to pay 4 million euros while BMPS continues to seek 5 million euros for each branch, Italian business daily Il Sole said.

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