ING embarks on €8bn asset sale
by Gill Montia
Story link: ING embarks on €8bn asset sale
ING Groep NV, the largest financial services firm in The Netherlands, has announced plans to shore up its capital strength by selling up to €8 billion worth of assets.
The banking and insurance group is considering the future of 15 businesses but says it will take its time over the auction, which could free up €4 billion in capital.
ING was in need of a €10 billion government bail-out during the financial turmoil of last October and went on to report a loss of €3.71 billion in the final quarter of 2008.
It has since raised €1.4 billion from the sale of its controlling stake in property and casualty unit, ING Canada Inc.
In future, ING’s says its banking business will focus on markets in the Benelux region, Poland, Romania and Turkey.
At the same time, its life and retirement insurance business will build on markets in the Benelux countries, central Europe, the US, Latin America and Asia.
As a means of simplifying the group, the two units will operate separately in future.
Finally, ING is over halfway through shedding 7,000 jobs worldwide and it is not known how many may yet be lost in the UK.
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