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Standard Chartered Said to Seek Sale of PrimeCredit Business

Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Standard Chartered Plc, the U.K. bank that gets about three-quarters of earnings from Asia, is seeking buyers for PrimeCredit Ltd., a Hong Kong consumer finance business, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

The sales process has already started, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private. The unit, which was acquired in 2004 and provides personal loans, may sell for $500 million to $700 million, Reuters reported earlier today.

Standard Chartered Chief Executive Officer Peter Sands said in November that the bank would cut businesses where it doesn’t have sufficient scale and had quit consumer banking in Japan and in Lebanon. It also plans to divest its Geneva-based private bank, a person with knowledge of the matter said this month.

Shaun Gamble, a spokesman for the London-based company, declined to comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: Howard Mustoe in London at hmustoe@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Keith Campbell at k.campbell@bloomberg.net

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