Axa is paying $494m in cash for the businesses it is acquiring, while QBE is paying a further $420m. In total the gross value of the assets being sold is $1.23bn, of which $444m will go to Axa and $748m to QBE.
Stuart Gulliver, chief executive of HSBC, said the sale was a “further step” in the bank’s strategy of selling off assets that are not seen as core to its future.
“It will enable us to focus our capital and resources on the growth of our core businesses, including the building of our broader wealth management capabilities,” said Mr Gulliver.
The deal is expected to complete in the second half of the year, thought the sale of the Argentine businesses could go through earlier.
HSBC is one year into a three-year cost cutting programme that has already involved several major disposals and that will see the bank cut its global workforce by about 30,000, or 10pc. Last year, HSBC sold large parts of its US credit card and retail banking operations, as well as selling businesses in Russia and Poland.