March 29, 2019 / 2:40 PM / 5 months ago

Sabadell hires JP Morgan to weigh options for its asset management unit-source

MADRID, March 29 (Reuters) - Spain’s Banco Sabadell has hired U.S. investment bank JP Morgan to find potential investors for the lender’s asset management division, a source familiar with the matter said on Friday.

Sabadell has publicly said it is considering selling non-core units as it looks to strengthen its solvency, which was hit by extraordinary costs of 460 million euros ($517 million) related to an IT glitch at its UK TSB unit in 2018.

The Spanish lender declined to comment on the news which was first reported earlier in the day by El Confidencial.com. The website added that Sabadell could also enter into a partnership with an international player to run the asset management division.

JP Morgan was not immediately available for comment.

The source said that no decision had been taken yet and among the options on the table was the sale of a minority or a majority stake in the unit.

Sabadell’s shares fell 40 percent last year, in part because of the TSB crisis which brought its fully loaded core tier-1 capital ratio, the strictest measure of solvency, down to 11.1 percent from 12.8 percent at end-2017.

The asset management division of Sabadell has 33.7 billion euros under management.

$1 = 0.8087 euros Reporting By Jesús Aguado; additional reporting by Andrés González; Editing by Axel Bugge and Kirsten Donovan

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