, Europe's biggest bank by market capitalization, said Monday it has entered into exclusive discussions with
for a possible acquisition of a majority stake in Nedbank of South Africa.
Nedbank is South Africa's fourth largest banking group by total assets.
In a statement to the London Stock Exchange, HSBC said the "discussions are ongoing and if successfully concluded would be conditional on, among other matters, obtaining the necessary regulatory approvals. "
The proposed transaction would be implemented through a partial offer to all Nedbank shareholders to acquire up to 70% of the Nedbank shares, Old Mutual said in a statement.
Nedbank said Monday its "initial assessment of the proposed transaction is that HSBC represents an attractive international banking partner and shareholder of reference and has the potential to provide Nedbank Group with benefits which should enhance Nedbank Group's ability to strengthen its position in the South African banking sector."
-- Reported by Joseph Woelfel in New York.
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