Global bank HSBC has stated that it is considering a sell-off of its building at London’s Canary Wharf as well as major offices in New York and Paris.
The bank, which recently raised $19 billion in a rights issue and thereby avoided taxpayer assistance, hopes to gain a further $4 billion from the sale. Spokesman David Hall told the media that they were in the early stages of negotiations. “We are taking a look at the market. There are people interested in buying at an appropriate price.”
The idea would be to sell the office buildings and lease them back, thereby boosting HSBC’s balance sheet without disrupting operations.
The bank’s profits have fallen by more than half since 2007. HSBC purchased its London HQ from Spanish property company Metrovacesa in November 2008 for £838 million. 18 months earlier the building had been worth over £1 billion.