in

HSBC in talks over sale of South American businesses

HSBC is in talks to sell several of its South American businesses as Britain’s largest bank continues to cut back its international operations as part of a turnaround plan.

In a statement to the market on Thursday, HSBC said it was “in discussions” to sell its units in Colombia, Uruguay and Paraguay.

The bank gave no details of how much it expected to get for the businesses or when the sales could be completed and said it would make “a further announcement if or when appropriate”.

The disposals are part of a restructuring plan announced last year by Stuart Gulliver, the lender’s chief executive, as part of a move to cut costs and focus on faster-growing emerging market countries.

HSBC plans to shed 30,000 jobs, or 10pc of its global workforce, by the end of next year. This week the bank confirmed it had already cut 14,000 full-time jobs, saving it about $1.2bn (£744m) a year.

Last month, the lender announced 2,000 layoffs in the UK. The main targets of the cuts are expected to be in-branch investment advisers and back-office administrators.

Mr Gulliver will give more details on what he called the “redesign” of the bank at an investor day next week. In particular, shareholders and City analysts are likely to want to hear more from the bank on which countries and businesses it will be focusing on.

The bank has already disposed of foreign units, including its Russian and Polish businesses, as well as large parts of its US credit card and retail banking operations.

In March, HSBC sold its general insurance businesses in a split deal to French insurer Axa and Australian insurance company QBE Insurance Group for $914m.

The insurance sale saw HSBC offload its Hong Kong, Singaporean, Argentine and Mexican general insurance businesses to the two insurers. The bank also signed a 10-year exclusive deal with the companies to allow them to sell products to its customers.

Since you’re here …

… we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading the Today Colombia than ever but advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. And unlike many news organizations, we haven’t put up a paywall – we want to keep our site as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. Updating reports on Today Colombia takes a lot of time, money and hard work. But we do it because we believe our reports matter.
If everyone who reads Today Colombia, who likes it, helps to support it by clicking our ads, our future would be much more secure. Do you part, click on an ad today.

Written by Rico

Rico

"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of onlinemagazines that includes TodayColombia.com. Rico brings his special kind of savvy to online marketing. His websites are engaging, provocative, informative and sometimes off the wall, where you either like or you leave it. The same goes for him, like him or leave him.There is no middle ground. No compromises, only a passion to present reality as he sees it!