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RBS settles out-of-court over IRHP mis-selling  August 30, 2017

Stuart Wall, the owner of collapsed Opal Property Group, has agreed to an out-of-court settlement with Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) after alleging that he was forced to take out interest rate hedging products (IRHP) whilst RBS manipulated benchmark rates.

The university accommodation provider was driven into administration in 2013 after it was ‘artificially distressed’ whilst under the management of the Global Restructuring Group (GRG).

Wall’s lawyers told Reuters, “The action has been settled without any admission of liability by the bank. The terms of the settlement are confidential,” and RBS issued the same statement.

Inconsistent evidence given by RBS’s defence witness

John Berry, former RBS chairman of corporate banking in Scotland, was the key defence witness for RBS against Stuart Wall. He was previously accused of giving ‘inconsistent evidence’ with statements that he made when he was a director at Opal.

Berry became a director of Opal whilst working at the Bank, and he continued his role after leaving RBS in 2008.

What was the Global Restructuring Group?

The Global Restructuring Group was Royal Bank of Scotland’s former turnaround division for struggling businesses – but in reality, this unit was used to squeeze SMEs of their profits and property, eventually pushing many into administration.

Once the scandal came to light, with agreement from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), RBS introduced a compensation scheme for businesses mistreated by the Global Restructuring Group.

The FCA also appointed specialist firms to chair a review of Royal Bank of Scotland’s treatment of small businesses who were under the false wing of the GRG.

On Friday, the BBC reported that the FCA report into GRG was leaked. They reported that ‘inappropriate action’ was experienced by 92% of viable firms. Read the full update here.

How can Seneca help?

Seneca have been working with a number of clients who have been affected by GRG. We have recovered £2.75 million relating to GRG losses and have also recovered over £100 million in total compensation for clients.

If you think that you may have been affected by the Global Restructuring Group, call us on 01204 322805 or get in touch through our contact form