Barclays agrees to sell Russia bank operations

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British bank Barclays said Tuesday it had agreed to sell its retail and commercial activities in Russia to local banker Igor Kim for an undisclosed amount.

"Barclays Bank PLC announces the sale of Barclays Bank LLC to investors including Igor Kim, one of Russia's leading bankers," it said in a statement.

The London-listed lender announced in February that it intended to sell the division.

"Barclays Capital will continue to operate in Russia through its existing broker dealer subsidiary Barclays Capital LLC," it added.

"Barclays Wealth, the private wealth management division of Barclays, will continue to offer offshore wealth management services to individuals in Russia."

The disposal is part of Barclays' strategy to focus on building up its investment banking activities in the region and follows recent moves by other European banks to rejig their Russian operations.

In September, French bank BNP Paribas said it would wind down its small retail banking network in the country and launch a consumer credit joint venture there with local player Sberbank.

Earlier this year, HSBC sold certain elements of its Russian retail banking business to ZAO Citibank.

- Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this report -

© 2011 AFP

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