Dutch court clears way for LaSalle Bank sale

July 13, 2007
The Netherlands' supreme court has ruled that ABN Amro Holding NV is not required to seek shareholder approval to sell its LaSalle Bank unit. Today's decision clears the way for the sale of LaSalle to Bank of America, of Charlotte, N.C.

LaSalle Bank, headquartered in Chicago, has virtually no retail presence in Indianapolis, instead focusing on commercial services.

ABN Amro announced April 23 that it would sell LaSalle to Bank of America for $21 billion. The same day, the Dutch bank also said it had agreed to be acquired by London-based Barclays Plc for $86 billion.

A lower Dutch court ruled that the LaSalle sale needed shareholder approval.

Indianapolis banking industry observers have said they think Bank of America might try to buy another bank to gain a local retail presence.

One option has been snatched away. On July 9, Milwaukee-based Marshall & Ilsley Corp. said it would buy First Indiana Corp., the last large locally owned bank, for $529 million.

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