GE plans exit from banking business

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General Electric announced plans to sell “most” of its finance business GE Capital during the next two years with the exception of certain portions related to the company’s industrial businesses.

Representatives from GE did not respond by press time to inquiries about the announcement’s effect on its South Carolina operations. The company has gas turbine, aviation and wind energy aviation manufacturing operations in Greenville, and employs about 3,000 people in the state.

The company will retain its GE Capital Aviation Services, Energy Financial Services and Healthcare Equipment Finance, which includes its aircraft leasing operations, as well as its energy and healthcare industries financing arms. The GE Capital businesses remaining with the company will account for about $90 billion in ending net investments – about $40 billion in the U.S. – according to the company.

“This is a major step in our strategy to focus GE around its competitive advantages,” said GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt in a news release.

GE’s industrial businesses are on track for operating earnings per share for 2015, the company said.

GE also plans to sell $26.5 billion of office buildings and commercial real estate debt to Blackstone Group LP, Wells Fargo & Co. and other buyers.

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