By Rhiannon Hoyle

SYDNEY--Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. (ANZ.AU) said it has agreed to sell its 20% stake in Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank for 9.19 billion yuan (US$1.32 billion).

China Cosco Shipping Corp. and Shanghai Sino-Poland Enterprise Management Development Corp. Ltd. will each acquire 10% of the Shanghai-based bank, said ANZ, which bought the stake in 2007.

ANZ said the sale price for its investment in Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank--which it says helped ANZ expand its presence in Asia in recent years--represents a price-to-book ratio of approximately 1.1 times the institution's net assets at the end of 2015.

"The sale reflects our strategy to simplify our business and improve capital efficiency," said ANZ Deputy Chief Executive Officer Graham Hodges. It "will also allow us to focus our resources on our institutional banking business in Asia," he said.

ANZ said the sale was agreed on Dec. 31 and is expected to be finalized by mid-2017.

Write to Rhiannon Hoyle at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 02, 2017 18:12 ET (23:12 GMT)

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