Brussels-based insurer Ageas announced it has reached an agreement with BNP Paribas Cardif to sell its stake in Cargeas Assicurazioni (CARGEAS), a non-life, Italian bancassurer, which provides health, homeowner, automobile and credit insurance to individuals and businesses.
Ageas and BNP Paribas Cardif have operated CARGEAS as a joint venture on a roughly 50/50 basis.
Financial terms of the transition were not disclosed. The deal is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close before the end of 2017.
“The divestment of the Italian activities, where Ageas only had a limited market share in a mature market, is in line with Ageas’s strategy to concentrate its efforts on further developing businesses where it holds stronger positions or where growth prospects are better,” said Ageas in a statement.
The sale also offered Ageas the opportunity to crystallize the value that has been created in the past years, the company said, noting that the divestment is expected to generate a capital gain of approximately €75 million ($87.4 million).
In 2016 CARGEAS had gross written premiums of €227 million ($264.7 million) and recorded a net profit of €44 million ($51.3 million).
“This acquisition is part of our 2020 development plan,” said Virginie Korniloff, chief operating officer domestic markets at BNP Paribas Cardif, the insurance unit of Paris-based bank, BNP Paribas.
“It will strengthen our presence in property and casualty insurance and double our protection revenue in Italy,” Korniloff added.
She noted that CARGEAS will continue to work closely with its bancassurance partners, particularly UBI Banca and BNL in Italy.
Ageas operates insurance businesses in Belgium, the UK, Luxembourg, France, Italy, Portugal, Turkey, China, Malaysia, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Singapore and the Philippines through a combination of wholly owned subsidiaries and long term partnerships with financial institutions and key distributors.
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