(Bloomberg) -- Standard Chartered Plc agreed to sell its business in Jordan to Arab Jordan Investment Bank as it looks to simplify its operations and focus on higher growth markets within Africa and the Middle East.

The emerging markets-focused bank will transfer all Jordan-based employees and clients to AJIB, as the local lender is known, as part of the deal, according to a statement. No terms for the sale, which already has the approval of the Central Bank of Jordan, were disclosed.

Standard Chartered boosted its guidance for 2023 and announced a bigger-than-expected share buyback last month as the bank tried to bolster its case for its independence amid potential takeover interest from First Abu Dhabi Bank PJSC. 

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“Our agreement with AJIB will allow us to accelerate our strategy and leverage on their track record of previous acquisitions to meet the financial needs of our clients,” Sunil Kaushal, Standard Chartered’s chief executive officer for Africa and the Middle East, said in the statement.

AJIB acquired the Jordanian unit of National Bank of Kuwait SAK last year, and before that, bought HSBC Holding Plc’s local arm in 2014.

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