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Old Mutual in talks with HSBC over Nedbank

Old Mutual has announced it is in talks to sell its majority owned subsidiary Nedbank Group to HSBC.

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The South African company, which also owns investment group Skandia and Skandia International, said the proposal it has received from HSBC follows a detailed review of the options open to it with respect to its controlling shareholding in Nedbank.

If it goes ahead, the deal would see HSBC buy up to 70% of Nedbank’s shares. However, the deal is subject to a number of pre-conditions and, in order for these to be satisfied, Old Mutual has granted a period of exclusivity to HSBC. Any offer would need to be need to be agreed by Old Mutual shareholders.

Old Mutual said the sale would ‘represent a major step in delivering its strategy as set out in March 2010 to reduce the group’s complexity’ and it would use the money raised partly to re-invest back into South Africa and in various emerging markets via Old Mutual SA, as well as to ‘meaningfully’ reduce its debt.

The company said it has had preliminary discussions with the South African regulatory authorities about the deal but recognises “these parties, as well as the Nedbank Group board, will have to consider the merits of the proposed transaction.”

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