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Report: Aviva mulls sale of Friends Provident International

Aviva Plc is considering selling unit Friends Provident International Ltd., which serves high-net-worth clients in Asia and the Middle East, for up to $750 million, The Wall Street Journal reported March 28, citing "people familiar with the situation."

A formal bidding process has yet to start but the U.K. insurer has reportedly received a number of pre-emptive offers for the unit, which has been placed under a strategic review. Chinese conglomerates Fosun Group and HNA Group Co. Ltd. are among entities that are evaluating the unit, according to the report.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is said to be overseeing the sale, the Journal added.

Aviva acquired Friends Provident International in April 2015 as part of its takeover with Friends Life Group Ltd. The U.K. insurer noted in its full-year 2016 earnings report that lower profits from Friends Provident International contributed to a decline in its operating profit in Asia.