RBS-led bid for ABN unconditional, payment Oct. 17

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LONDON, Oct 10 (Reuters) Three banks led by Britain's Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc said their 72 billion-euro (2 billion) offer for Dutch ABN AMRO Bank NV, the largest-ever banking takeover, was now unconditional.

The consortium, which includes Belgium's Fortis and Spain's Santander, said in a statement on Wednesday that payment of the offer price of 35.60 euros in cash and 0.296 new RBS share for each ABN AMRO share will take place on Oct. 17.

Around 86 percent of ABN investors have already accepted the offer, and the remaining ABN shareholders have until Oct. 31 to tender their shares, an extension from Oct. 11.

On Monday, RBS and its partners confirmed victory in a hard-fought contest for ABN against Britain's Barclays Plc which was the Dutch bank's initial preferred bidder.

Investor attention will now shift to the unprecedented integration challenge and to concerns that the three might have overpaid to win the day.

In a parting salvo, Barclays CEO John Varley said on Friday he believed the consortium had paid too much, as ABN's intrinsic value had been dented by the summer's financial markets turmoil.

The trio of banks is expected to move swiftly to demonstrate the value of the ABN deal at a critical point in the banking cycle -- particularly for consortium leader RBS, set to take on ABN's businesses most affected by the capital market turbulence.

REUTERS DKS RK1658

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