GLOBAL - Dutch bank ABN Amro has exited the asset servicing business with the sale of its 50% stake in custody joint venture ABN Amro Mellon to the newly merged Bank of New York Mellon.

ABN Amro said today it was selling out of the joint venture, which was established with Mellon Financial in 2003 to provide global custody and related services to institutions outside North America, for an undisclosed amount.

A spokesperson for ABN Amro Mellon said "essentially" the staff would transfer over to the new company. The ABN Amro Mellon managing board will remain in place.

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter.

On Monday, the Bank of New York and Mellon announced the completion of their merger, which has created the world's largest custodian with more than $18trn (€13.2trn) in assets under custody and administration.

Nadine Chakar, CEO of ABN Amro Mellon, will retain her responsibilities under BNY Mellon's ownership, in tandem with her new role within the new company as head of Europe, Middle East and Africa for the BNY Mellon Asset Servicing group.

Chakar said: "Following its decision to merge with The Bank of New York, Mellon was keen to explore the possibility of taking full ownership of ABN Amro Mellon. Both shareholders are in agreement that such a change of ownership is in the best interests of the JV and its clients."

A spokesperson for ABN Amro said the sale was in line with the group's strategy to focus on its core business.

Last year the firm sold its Global Futures business to UBS for an initial consideration of $386m.

The Dutch bank remains at the centre of a takeover battle between Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland.