Tom Keighley

Member Article

Ageas buy London insurers for £116m

Hampshire-based insurance group Ageas UK has agreed to buy Groupama Insurance Company Limited.

The acquisition of London-based Groupama will make Ageas the fifth largest UK non-life insurer, with a 5.2% market share.

A statement from Ageas said an agreement has been made for a total consideration of £116m, that will complement Ageas UK’s multi-channel distribution approach, strengthening its presence in the UK broker market.

Groupama offer a range of car, motorcycle, home, travel, personal accident and commercial insurance in the UK, however the deal will exclude the firm’s UK broking operations.

The deal is subject to regulatory scrutiny, before a closing is expected to be made by the end of 2012.

Bart De Smet, CEO of Ageas, said: “I welcome this acquisition on its strategic and financial merits and as an important next step in the execution of the Ageas Group strategy towards a well balanced portfolio in terms of Life and Non-Life business.

“Following on from the start of the partnership with Tesco Bank in 2010, and more recently the acquisition of Kwik Fit Financial Services and Castle Cover, this acquisition also reflects the multi-channel, multi-brand distribution strategy of Ageas as a group and more specifically in the UK. In terms of financial merits, the return on investment is expected to exceed Ageas’s minimum return requirement of 11%.”

Barry Smith, CEO of Ageas UK, added: “This deal is a great strategic fit in the continuing development of Ageas in the UK. Both Ageas and GICL have strong reputations in the UK broker market and this deal reinforces our ongoing commitment to brokers and their customers.

“We pride ourselves on strong relationships with brokers and today’s announcement sends a clear signal that we will continue to support and work closely with them. The complementary strengths of Ageas and GICL will create an exciting business focused on customer needs whilst generating a greater return for our company.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Tom Keighley .

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