ABN AMRO Bank N.V. is a Dutch state-owned bank with headquarters in Amsterdam. It was re-established, in its current form in 2009, following the acquisition and break-up of the original ABN AMRO by a banking consortium consisting of Royal Bank of Scotland Group, Santander Group and Fortis. Following the collapse of Fortis, who acquired the Dutch business, it was nationalized by the Dutch government along with Fortis Bank Nederland.
The bank is a product of a long history of mergers and acquisitions that date to 1765. In 1991, Algemene Bank Nederland (ABN) and AMRO Bank (itself the result of a merger of the Amsterdamsche Bank and the Rotterdamsche Bank in the 1960s) agreed to merge to create the original ABN AMRO. By 2007, ABN AMRO was the second-largest bank in the Netherlands and the eighth-largest in Europe by assets. At that time the magazine The Banker and Fortune Global 500 placed it 15th in the list of world’s biggest banks and it had operations in 63 countries, with over 110,000 employees.
In October 2007, a consortium of the Royal Bank of Scotland Group, Fortis and Banco Santander, known as RFS Holdings B.V. acquired the bank, in what was the world's biggest bank takeover to date. Consequently, the bank was divided into three parts, each owned by one of the members of the consortium. However, RBS and Fortis soon ran into serious trouble: the large debt created to fund the takeover had depleted the banks' reserves just as the financial crisis of 2007–2010 started. As a result, the Dutch government stepped-in and bailed out Fortis in October 2008, before splitting ABN AMRO's Dutch assets (which had primarily been allocated to Fortis) from those owned by RBS, which were effectively assumed by the UK government due to its bail-out of the British bank. The operations owned by Santander, notably those in Italy and Brazil, were merged with Santander, sold or eliminated.
The Dutch government appointed former Dutch finance minister Gerrit Zalm as CEO to restructure and stabilise the bank, and in February 2010 the assets it owned were legally demerged from those owned by RBS.This demerger created two separate organisations, ABN AMRO Bank N.V. and The Royal Bank of Scotland N.V. The former was merged with ABN AMRO Private Banking, Fortis Bank Nederland, the private bank MeesPierson (formerly owned by the original ABN AMRO and Fortis) and the diamond bank International Diamond & Jewelry Group to create ABN AMRO Group N.V., with the Fortis name being dropped on 1 July 2010. The remaining parts of the original ABN AMRO still owned by The Royal Bank of Scotland N.V., meanwhile, were renamed, sold or closed.
The Dutch government has said that ABN AMRO would remain state-owned until at least 2014, after which it would consider a public stock market listing for the bank.