Analysts estimate Bank of Scotland's stake amounts to 15-30%

The Bank of Scotland has taken a stake in the £1.2bn-turnover Miller Group, in the most significant financial move in the company’s history.

The size of the stake is currently unclear, although some analysts have put the amount at between 15-30%.

Keith Miller

The move comes shortly after a row between Keith Miller, the company’s chief executive, and rebel family shareholders who wanted to sell a stake in the company, which threatened to undermine the stability of the firm.

The dispute, which erupted in a public battle before Christmas, was resolved in February when the rebels struck a deal with Keith Miller which allowed them to sell their shares on the company’s internal share market. It is currently unclear whether it is these shares which have been bought by Bank of Scotland.

The move has been announced two days before Miller is due to report its full year results on Wednesday. The company is widely expected to post a slight dip in profit due to tough housing market conditions. Miller is the sixth largest volume housebuilder in the UK, owning around 13,000 plots with a total development value of about £2.5bn.

Keith Miller, Miller Group chief executive, said: “The Bank of Scotland clearly understands our business and has the confidence to invest through the cycles, for the long term. I am delighted with this outcome and welcome the Bank as a valued equity investor. I believe they will add a huge amount of value to the Group going forward as we continue to grow the Group organically, geographically and potentially through acquisition.”

Peter Cummings, the chief executive of Bank of Scotland Corporate, said: “We are delighted to support Keith Miller and his management team in this landmark transaction. At Bank of Scotland we believe in partnership, always back strong partners, and align our interests with those of our partners over the long term. This is a clear demonstration of that objective.”