Eversheds scoops HSBC credit card disposal

Eversheds has advised HSBC on the £385m sale of two of its credit card businesses, Marbles and Beneficial, to SAV Credit, which specialises in loans to so-called near-prime customers.

Corporate finance partner Antony Thomlinson of Eversheds is understood to have been selected from HSBC’s advisory panel, having previously advised the bank on other consumer credit work.

The deal was financed by a loan facility arranged by Royal Bank of Scotland, which turned to Clifford Chance partner Kevin Ingram. Equity funding was provided by Palamon Capital Partners, Electra Private Equity and Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners.

SAV Credit was advised by David Wittmann of Slaughter and May, who is also adviser to private equity group Palamon Capital Partners, which established SAV Credit in 2002.

HSBC said it disposed of the 338,000 accounts in the credit card portfolios as they were not a core part of its strategy to grow its card business.

The disposal of credit card businesses has proved popular in boosting banks’ profits. In April 2007 Lovells advised Barclays on the £390m cash sale of part of its Monument credit card portfolio.

Clifford Chance, Eversheds and Slaughters declined to comment.