NatWest Group (LSE:NWG) PLC was the biggest FTSE 100 riser on Friday after it said as part of its phased withdrawal from the Republic of Ireland market it has signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Irish financial services group Permanent TSB Group PLC (PTSB) for the proposed sale of several elements of its business.

The banking giant said the proposed deal, which also involves its subsidiary Ulster Bank in the Republic of Ireland, includes around €7.6bn of gross performing loans, mostly relating to non-tracker mortgages, as well as 25 branch locations.

READ: UK govt to sell down NatWest stake

NatWest said it expected 400-500 workers to be transferred to PTSB as part of the deal, adding that it will also receive a minority equity stake in PTSB as part of the transaction.

“In line with our strategy of a phased withdrawal from the Republic of Ireland, I am pleased that we are today announcing a significant update in the form of this non-binding memorandum of understanding with Permanent TSB.   This builds on the recently announced sale of the majority of Ulster Bank’s performing commercial banking business to Allied Irish Bank.  Our focus remains on supporting our customers and colleagues as we continue our withdrawal from the Republic of Ireland”, NatWest chief executive Alison Rose said in a statement.

In late afternoon trading, NatWest shares were up 3% at 200p.

–Adds share price–