The transaction involves the transfer of Standard Chartered’s corporate, commercial and institutional banking, consumer lending and private banking businesses, including all its employees working in the Jordanian unit


Standard Chartered Bank London. (Credit: Cobaltblue25/Wikipedia)

UK-based consumer bank Standard Chartered is reportedly planning to divest its business operations in Jordan to Arab Jordan Investment Bank (AJIB).

Standard Chartered and AJIB have signed an agreement, subject to central bank approval.

Under the terms of the agreement, Standard Chartered’s corporate, commercial and institutional banking, consumer lending and private banking businesses in Jordan will be transferred to AJIB.

The transaction involves the transfer of all Standard Chartered Bank employees in Jordan to AJIB, said the publication.

Standard Chartered Africa and Middle East CEO Sunil Kaushal said: “The agreement is aligned with the bank’s global strategy to deliver efficiencies, reduce complexity, as well as redirect resources within the Africa Middle East region to areas with the greatest potential to drive scale, grow and better support clients.”

The announcement comes at a time when the British lender is looking to exit seven markets in Africa and the Middle East, reported Reuters.

In April last year, Standard Chartered announced its plans to exit from seven markets, including Angola, Cameroon, Gambia, Jordan, Lebanon, Sierra Leone and Zimbabwe.

The bank chose to exit markets where it is in sub-scale and to focus its strengths on faster-growing markets in the region, such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

The transaction is in line with AJIB’s strategy to increase its market share in the country, which has been expanding with the acquisition of HSBC’s Jordanian unit in 2014, and the National Bank of Kuwait’s business in Jordan in 2022.

Standard Chartered joins the global lenders who reduced their presence in Africa in recent years, struggling to reach scale compared with locals, reported Reuters.

The company invested heavily in Africa’s digital banking strategy, but struggled to translate customer acquisition into steady profits, said the publication.

In 2016, Barclays sold its African unit, Credit Suisse pulled out of its wealth management business in nine African countries this year.