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HSBC to sell off private equity divisions

The firm will sell off its five internal buy-out firms

07 June 2010

HSBC is negotiating the sale of its five private equity fund businesses to management.

Europe's biggest bank will offload its divisions in Hong Kong, Britain, the United States, Canada and the Middle East.

The bank has around £1.2 billion invested in the internal firms while around £5 billion is committed by external investors.

HSBC's private equity arms provide support for management buyouts in the UK, while other ventures provide different services, such as supplying capital for smaller businesses in Africa.

It comes as expected new rules in the US will ban banks from owning their own private equity firms and hedge funds.

The bank would avoid any potential regulation by moving the firms onto management.

Other banks are already looking to follow suit, as Barclays plans to separate its private equity business in the summer and Royal Bank of Scotland will either sell or close its firms in the near future.

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