The Co-op Bank has new entered 'exclusive' merger talks with Coventry Building Society. This is now officially confirmed.

Starting with the Financial Times, which included a quote from the Customer Union, a number of media outlets have now picked up on the story. (Paywall)

We commented to the FT:

"The Customer Union for Ethical Banking, the independent union for Co-op’s customers, said a successful deal would “align perfectly with our dual goals: preserving the bank’s world-leading ethical standards and steering it back towards some form of mutual or co-operative ownership.”

The story was also picked up by the Guardian, which referred to the Customer Union:

A common theme to the coverage was that this could lead to an effective 're-multualisation' of the bank. We'd point out  that the bank was never a mutual in the first place, rather it was owned by a mutual - which is more than a pedantic point. 

MSN picked up an interesting angle however:

"The proposed merger would not mean that Coventry Building Society demutualises and ceases to be a building society.

A spokesperson from Coventry Building Society said: 'We're proudly a mutual and would never consider being anything else.' "

A possibly unnecessary but nevertheless welcome statement.