HSBC has announced plans to sell its branch operations in Greece to local peer Pancreta Bank for an undisclosed sum.

HSBC Continental Europe, an indirect subsidiary of HSBC, signed the deal, which is part of the bank’s multi-year restructuring plan. 

The lender said that the ‘in-principle’ agreement to sell the Greek retail arm is expected to complete in the first half of 2023. 

Upon completion, which is yet to receive regulatory clearance, HSBC Continental Europe will transfer assets worth €2bn, liabilities, 320 employees and the network of 15 HSBC branches in Greece to Pancreta Bank.

HSBC has been operating in the country since 1981 and caters to over 90,000 retail customers and about 500 corporate customers through the 15 branches.

Pancreta Bank noted that the deal is expected to enhance its capital adequacy ratio and HSBC’s branch network is complementary to its operations in Athens.

As part of the restructuring, HSBC has been working to reduce its European and American presence to focus on the Asian market.

In May 2021, London-headquartered HSBC announced plans to pull the plug on its US retail banking business.  

Shortly after, HSBC Continental Europe signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to sell HSBC’s French retail banking business.

The news comes close on the heels of HSBC more than doubling its annual pre-tax profit in 2021 to $18.9bn.

The lender’s profit after tax also jumped by $8.6bn to $14.7bn on year-on-year basis.