The company logo of Noble Group is displayed at its office in Hong Kong, China. REUTERS

Embattled commodities trader Noble Group on Monday said it would sell its U.S.-based ethanol producing business to Zeeland Farm Services for US$12.5 million plus adjustments.

Noble Americas South Bend Ethanol LLC (NASBE) would be sold to family-owned agricultural and transportation services firm Zeeland after adjustments for working capital, inventory and debt.

NASBE is currently fully held by Noble Americas Corp (NAC), which Noble is selling to Vitol U.S. Holdings.

Vitol, which had planned to sell NASBE after the acquisition of NAC, has agreed to allow Noble to sell NASBE before or simultaneously with the NAC takeover.

The Hong Kong-based firm, which is in talks with investors to address its deteriorating financial position, has been forced to shrink its business, exiting loss-making and non-core operations in order to survive.

Earlier this month, the company announced the surprise departure of its co-Chief Executive Jeff Frase, just days after it reported a third-quarter loss of $1.17 billion and warned that the operating environment remains challenging.

Noble Group shares were down 3.6 percent at S$0.16 on the Singapore Exchange. The stock has lost 17 percent since Friday's close, dropping for a seventh week. The trader's market capitalization, which once topped $10 billion, has shrunk to $168 million.