J.P. Morgan & Co. will sell its 40% stake in an Indian investment banking joint venture to its Indian partner, Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India Ltd.

A Morgan spokesman said the bank will sell its stake at par value but did not disclose that amount.

Peter Woicke, Morgan's chief executive officer for Asia, said in a statement that Morgan planned to expand the scope of its activities in India "through a more direct involvement." Sources said the bank plans to establish its own securities company.

The joint venture, ICICI Securities and Finance Co., is one of India's leading merchant bankers, with businesses ranging from stock and bond sales to consulting on mergers and acquisitions. Morgan and ICICI formed the venture in April 1993. The U.S. bank took a 40% stake in ICICI's asset management subsidiary two years later. The bank sold that asset management stake around nine months ago to Prudential Corp. of the United Kingdom.

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