Barclays bank is to leave Africa as part of plans to overhaul the company following a 2 percent fall in profits, the company said Tuesday.
In a statement, the British bank, which has had a presence on the continent for more than 100 years, said it would sell its 62 percent stake in Barclays Africa Group over the coming two to three years.
The global banking group announced that underlying annual profits for 2015 fell to 5.4 billion pounds ($7.53 billion) from 5.5 billion pounds ($7.62 billion) the year before.
Barclays Africa Group has more than 12 million customers in a dozen countries across the continent. There are fears the move could result in job losses.
The sale will allow Barclays to concentrate on Barclays UK and Barclays Corporate and International.
Chief Executive Jes Staley told BBC News: “You go to places like Uganda and Kenya and the brand of Barclays is as strong there as it is in the UK. But we have to make some very difficult decisions if we are going to get Barclays into focused, clear, compelling business model that generates returns for our shareholders.”
Like other major banks, Barclays has received huge fines for rigging prices in foreign exchange and Libor interest rates and faces tougher banking regulations to protect customers.