Lloyds Banking Group has sold off its German life insurance business.
Heidelberger Leben, is the latest asset to be sold off by the financial institution as it looks to increase efficiency and reduce its bad debt liability.
However, Lloyds has had to sell off the firm for less than half of its original value – losing it approximately £330 million.
The sale follows advice from the Bank of England that Lloyds must increase its capital base to make sure it had enough money to rely on if the economy deteriorated in the coming months or years.
However, while the finances raised from the sale of Heidelberger Leben was less than analysts expected, it has bolstered the UK-based bank’s balance sheets to the tune of £255 million, which could help it increase lending to small businesses in the UK.
Mike Trippitt, director of banking research at Numis Securities, told Reuters: “It’s another step along the road to just focusing on the domestic retail business and another step along the road to a fourth-quarter dividend.