HSBC in talks to sell Asian units

11 April 2012

HSBC's restructuring plans are continuing to gather pace after it emerged the bank is in negotiations to sell more of its Asian business interests.

Europe's largest financier announced yesterday (10 April) it is holding talks with several investors over the possibility of selling its assets in Korea and Pakistan as chief executive Stuart Gulliver looks to improve the company's balance sheet.

HSBC currently has 11 retail banking and wealth management branches in Korea - which handle assets worth around £16.5 billion ($26.2 billion) - and it is thought these will be bought by the Korea Development Bank.

A statement from HSBC indicated that "discussions are ongoing" regarding this deal, but also insisted the firm "remains committed to the Korean market", regardless of the outcome.

Meanwhile, it is also holding talks with "a number of interested parties" over the potential sale of its £350 million Pakistani business.

Last month, it was announced that HSBC is also involved in negotiations to sell its retail banking unit in Mauritius.

By Gary Cooper

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