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News Releases

 

RBC to acquire Mourant Private Wealth

JERSEY, Channel Islands, December 19, 2008 — Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) - RY on NYSE and TSX - today announced it has signed an agreement to acquire Mourant Private Wealth, the 47 employee private client trust business of Mourant Limited (Mourant), whose group of businesses includes one of the leading offshore law firms Mourant du Feu & Jeune. Mourant Private Wealth is based in Jersey with operations in Dubai and Cayman. Completion of the transaction remains subject to regulatory approval but is expected to close in early 2009. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

In the British Isles, RBC Wealth Management employs just under 1500 staff and has assets under administration of £63 billion. The acquisition of Mourant Private Wealth is expected to add more than £3.5 billion in assets under administration to RBC Wealth Management.

RBC Wealth Management is recognized as the leading provider of trust services in the British Isles - RBC was voted Number One Trust Services Provider in the UK in Euromoney's Private Banking Awards, 2008, 2007, 2006. With the completion of this latest acquisition, RBC Wealth Management will have over 800 trust professionals.

Paul Patterson, Head of RBC Wealth Management, British Isles, said "Mourant Private Wealth brings to RBC Wealth Management a dedicated focus on trust, experienced professionals and a terrific cultural fit and philosophy."

"This transaction advances our long-term strategy to build further on our core business of integrated private wealth management services to international clients by hiring experienced professionals with strong client relationships," said Mr. Patterson. "We believe that the wealth management sector will continue to be a growing market in the years ahead as global economies develop and populations mature, which will present many opportunities for our clients, our people and our shareholders."

Nicola Davies, Group CEO, Mourant, said "We have enjoyed a close working relationship with RBC for over 45 years. This transaction is a good solution for the clients and employees of Mourant Private Wealth by giving them access to RBC's global network and international wealth management expertise."

This transaction is the latest in a series of deals completed by RBC as it continues to build its international presence. The acquisition of Mourant Private Wealth follows RBC Wealth Management's successful acquisitions of Ernst & Young's trust businesses in Jersey and Guernsey in January 2000 and the acquisition of Abacus Financial Services Group Limited in Jersey, Guernsey, London, Edinburgh and Cheltenham in November 2005.

About RBC Wealth Management
With approximately C$500 billion of global assets under administration and C$220 billion of global assets under management, RBC Wealth Management provides integrated and diversified international wealth management expertise and solutions, asset management and trust services to high net worth individuals and to corporate and institutional clients. Services provided by our more than 4,000 consultants, advisors, private bankers and trust officers include trust and estate planning, tax advice, discretionary investment management and investment advisory services, structured solutions, banking, lending and global custody. The international arm of RBC Wealth Management services over 35,000 high net worth individuals and institutions through 35 offices in the British Isles, Continental Europe, Asia, the Middle East, the Caribbean, Latin America and North America. For more information, please visit www.rbcwminternational.com.

About RBC
Royal Bank of Canada (RY on TSX and NYSE) and its subsidiaries operate under the master brand name RBC. We are Canada's largest bank as measured by assets and market capitalization, one of North America's leading diversified financial services companies and among the largest banks in the world, as measured by market capitalization. We provide personal and commercial banking, wealth management services, insurance, corporate and investment banking and transaction processing services on a global basis. We employ more than 80,000 full- and part-time employees who serve more than 17 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S. and 48 other countries. For more information, please visit www.rbc.com.

About Mourant
Mourant is a multi-disciplinary, international professional services group, specializing in private wealth services, offshore law and fund and corporate administration. Mourant currently has offices in Cayman, Dubai, Dublin, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Jersey, London, Luxembourg, New York, San Francisco and Singapore.

Mourant Private Wealth is a multi-award winning international provider of private wealth trust and company administration and other value added services to the global market of high net worth individuals.

- 30 -

For more information, please contact:
Beverley Weber, RBC Head of Communications, Europe & Asia
Tel: +44 (0)20 7029 7685, beverley.weber@rbc.com

Marcia Moffat, RBC Head of Investor Relations
Tel: + (1) 416-955-7803, marcia.moffat@rbc.com

Or visit the site: www.rbc.com/investorrelations

CAUTION REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Certain statements contained in this press release may be deemed to be forward-looking statements under certain securities laws, including the "safe harbour" provisions of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and in any applicable Canadian securities legislation, and Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) intends that such forward-looking statements be subject to the safe-harbour created thereby.

These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to the acquisition of Mourant Private Wealth by RBC. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words such as "believe", "expect", "forecast", "anticipate", "intend", "estimate", "goal", "plan" and "project" and similar expressions of future or conditional verbs such as "will", "may", "should", "could", or "would".

By their very nature, forward-looking statements require us to make assumptions and are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties, which give rise to the possibility that our predictions, forecasts, projections, expectations and other forward-looking information, including statements about the acquisition of Mourant Private Wealth by RBC will not be achieved. We caution readers not to place undue reliance on these statements as a number of important factors could cause our actual results to differ materially from the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements. These factors include, but are not limited to the possibility that the proposed transaction does not close when expected or at all because required regulatory or other approvals are not received or other conditions to the closing are not satisfied on a timely basis or at all; that Mourant Limited and RBC may be required to modify the terms and conditions of the proposed transaction to achieve regulatory approval, or that the anticipated benefits of the transaction are not realized as a result of such things as the strength of the economy, including the impact of the continuing volatility in the financial markets and lack of liquidity in credit markets, and competitive factors in the areas where Mourant Private Wealth does business; the impact of changes in the laws and regulations regulating financial services and enforcement thereof (including banking, insurance and securities); judicial judgments and legal proceedings; RBC's ability to complete the acquisition of Mourant Private Wealth and to integrate it with RBC successfully; reputational risks, and other factors that may affect future results of RBC and Mourant Private Wealth, including changes in trade policies, timely development and introduction of new products and services, changes in tax laws, and technological and regulatory changes. We caution that the foregoing list of important factors is not exhaustive. Additional information about these and other factors can be found in RBC's 2008 Annual Report.

Except as required by law, RBC assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements contained in this press release.


 



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12/19/2008 09:35:26