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StanChart sells principal finance biz

Standard Chartered Bank is engaged in discussions to sell its private equity business to Intermediate Capital Group. This will be part of a broader disposal of the bank’s ‘principal finance’ investment business. The bank said it has separately completed the sale of the other half of its principal finance unit, comprising its real estate investment business in Asia, to private equity firm Actis. The size of the deal has not been disclosed. The real estate principal finance business has around $700 million in investments across Asia and Africa. Standard Chartered had decided in 2016 to exit the principal finance business, which invests the bank’s and its clients’ money, as part of a broader strategic shift to focus more on serving the bank’s corporate and individual customers. The business had been a drag on the bank’s performance, reporting an operating loss of $217 million in 2016.

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