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Ageas sells stake in Italian nonlife insurance JV to BNP Paribas unit

Ageas SA/NV said Dec. 29 that it completed the sale of its stake in Cargeas Assicurazioni SpA to BNP Paribas Cardif for a total cash consideration of €178 million.

Ageas held a stake of 50% plus 1 share in the Italian nonlife insurance business, which it agreed to sell to the BNP Paribas SA unit in July. BNP Paribas Cardif will now take full control of Cargeas, having held a stake of 50% minus 1 share in the two companies' joint venture prior to the acquisition.

The transaction, which obtained all necessary regulatory approvals, generates a net capital gain of €77 million for Ageas at insurance level in the continental Europe segment and an additional €10 million at group level in the general account, the Belgian company said.

Ageas expects the sale to have a positive impact of 4 percentage points on the group's Solvency II position, but noted that it does not expect any impact on its insurance Solvency II ratio as of 2017-end. Both the capital gain and the cash impact will be recorded in the fourth quarter.

Cargeas recorded a net profit under International Financial Reporting Standards of €44 million in 2016, with gross written premiums of €229 million. It sells health, homeowner, automobile and creditor insurance to some 580,000 individuals and business clients in Italy.