UPDATE 1-Japan Post to sell part of Australian logistics business, book $645 mln loss -Nikkei

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TOKYO, April 20 (Reuters) - Japan Post Holdings Co has decided to sell part of its Australian logistics arm Toll Holdings to an investment fund and booked a one-off loss of 70 billion yen ($645 million), the Nikkei newspaper reported on Tuesday.

Japan Post will sell loss-making Toll’s delivery business in Australia and New Zealand to Australia’s Allegro Funds for about 1 billion yen and will also assume “billions of U.S. dollars” of Toll’s debt, the Nikkei reported.

Japan Post was not immediately available for comment. The company is set to make an announcement on Wednesday, the Nikkei said, adding that most of the extraordinary loss was booked in the financial year that ended in March 2021 and would be offset by tax reductions on other activities.

In 2015, the Japanese company acquired Toll for A$6.5 billion ($5.05 billion), making an ambitious bet to diversify overseas. But two years after the deal, it had to write down the bulk of Toll’s value due to its weak performance.

Toll reported a A$10 million operating loss for the nine months ended December 2020. ($1 = 108.4500 yen) ($1 = 1.2865 Australian dollars) (Reporting by Takashi Umekawa and Makiko Yamazaki Editing by Chang-Ran Kim and Susan Fenton)