LONDON, April 29 HSBC Holdings is
selling its half stake in the South Korean insurance firm Hana
HSBC Life Insurance Co to its partner in the venture, the 52nd
deal it has struck as part of a global retreat from peripheral
businesses in the past two years.
Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver wants to cut $3.5 billion in
annual costs and make HSBC less complex, and has been unwinding
many deals or exiting countries and businesses where it is
unprofitable or lacks critical mass.
HSBC did not disclose financial details of the deal, but it
paid $58 million pounds for the stake of 50 percent minus one
share when it signed the joint venture with Hana Financial Group
in March 2008.
It said on Monday it was selling the stake back to Hana, one
of South Korea's largest financial firms.
Many of its sales have reversed what had been a broad
expansion into insurance. Last week HSBC sold its general
insurance business in Macau, and it has also sold a minority
stake in Chinese insurer Ping An for $9.4 billion.
Hana HSBC Life had gross assets of about $2.5 billion at the
end of last year and HSBC said the deal should complete on May
The bank said it remained committed to the Korean market and
continued to invest in developing its investment banking