Bank of America and China Construction Bank announced plans to jointly develop a co-branded credit card business in China, following the model of competitors Citigroup and HSBC. Bank of America's $2.5 billion purchase of a 9% stake in China's second-largest bank in 2005 has yielded tremendous financial rewards on the books for the US bank, as CCB shares have doubled since its IPO a year ago, state media reported. However, it also proved to be costly for BoA, as it gave up its own opportunities to expand in China and sold its profitable Hong Kong retail banking operation to CCB at a bargain price. The two banks have a two-stage business plan, beginning with CCB setting up an independent credit card unit to which BoA will provide consulting services. This will later be spun off as a co-branded joint venture, with CCB holding a 63% stake and BoA the remaining 37%. Foreign banks have generally sought to partner with strong local players in co-branded ventures to enter China's expanding consumer credit market, whose growth exceeded 100% last year.