StanChart mulls options for HK pensions business

May 15, 2015 09:18
Standard Chartered is said to be in talks for possible stake sale in its Hong Kong pensions business. Photo: Bloomberg

Standard Chartered is looking at bringing in outside investors for its Hong Kong pensions business as the bank reviews its operations following a difficult year, Financial Times reported.

Discussions are at an early stage, and a joint venture is possible, the report said, citing sources familiar with the matter.

The bank declined to comment on market rumors that it will exit the Hong Kong pension business, which is believed to be worth about US$350 million, the paper said.

In an internal memo to staff, Stanchart is said to have affirmed that "Hong Kong is a key market for Standard Chartered and MPF [the city's mandatory provident fund] will remain a core product offered to clients."

StanChart's deliberations on possible options for the Hong Kong pensions business come as the UK-based bank has been selling non-core businesses and seeking cost savings of up to US$400 million a year.

In recent months, StanChart disposed of a Hong Kong consumer finance business, shut its global equities unit and announced a further 2000 job cuts in its retail business.

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