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Generali in talks to acquire MetLife assets; Scor snaps up Coriolis Capital

S&P Global Market Intelligence offers our top picks of insurance news stories and more published throughout the week.

On the deal table

* Generali is reportedly in early talks to acquire U.S.-based MetLife Inc.'s Central European assets, which could be worth more than €2 billion.

* SCOR Investment Partners SE, the portfolio management company of Scor SE, will acquire 100% of Coriolis Capital Ltd. The acquisition, which would raise Scor Investment Partners' AUM to $2.1 billion, is expected to be finalized in the second half, after which Coriolis Capital will become a subsidiary of Scor Investment.

* U.K. private equity firm AnaCap Financial Partners LLP acquired a majority stake in Danish health insurance and claims management services provider SundhedsGruppen A/S for undisclosed terms.

* Allianz Group's U.K. CEO Jon Dye said the German insurer would likely back further acquisitions by its U.K. business given suitable deal terms. His comments follow news reports that Allianz is in talks to buy the home insurance business of U.K. insurer Legal & General Group PLC.

Rules and regulations

* Disputes between clients and Russian insurers regarding compulsory third-party motor insurance will be resolved by an ombudsman service set up at the country's central bank beginning in June.

* LAMP Insurance Co. Ltd. asked the Supreme Court of Gibraltar to appoint an official receiver and place the business into liquidation. LAMP said it is insolvent and has been unable to secure additional financing. The hearing date for the application is scheduled for May 31.

Top brass movements

* London-listed South Africa-based Old Mutual Ltd. announced that CEO Peter Moyo has been suspended due to a "material breakdown in trust and confidence" between him and the board.

* Former Lloyd's of London CFO John Parry was appointed to the same post at Bermuda-based Armour Group Ltd., effective in June.

In other news

* Vienna Insurance Group AG reported a 10.5% increase in its first-quarter net result after noncontrolling interests to €83.5 million from €75.5 million a year ago. Its gross premiums written increased 2.9% to €2.91 billion, while net earned premiums went up 4.5% to €2.30 billion.

* Korean Reinsurance Co. has established a subsidiary in Switzerland. The unit, Korean Re Switzerland AG, received a license from the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority to begin reinsurance operations in Europe, effective June 1.

* A disputed £30 million insurance claim made by failed U.K. steel producer British Steel Corp. Ltd. "could rise significantly" if the 18 insurers involved in the claim continue to fight its payment, according to Bruce Hepburn, CEO of insurance governance consultancy Mactavish which is representing British Steel in the dispute. The lead underwriter is Zurich Insurance Group AG, and another participant is Liberty Mutual Holding Co. Inc.'s London-based Liberty Specialty Markets Ltd. operation. The list of insurers also includes Aviva PLC, Axa XL and RSA Insurance Group PLC.

* MS Amlin is acquiring a minority strategic stake in managing general agent Envelop Risk, to boost the strategic relationship between the two firms.

Featured during the week on S&P Global Market Intelligence

Brexit-fueled insurance broker M&A would harm competition, says CEO: EIS Partners CEO Nick Davenport told a conference that wholesale brokers handling Lloyd's business in Europe would face challenges in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Average year for insurance carrier M&A remains achievable, if less likely: U.S. and Bermuda insurance M&A, facing an almost impossible year-over-year comparison, has been historically sluggish in terms of aggregate deal value so far in 2019. But the tally materially understates the level of activity that has occurred.

Cyberinsurance war exclusion would be hard to defend in court, legal experts say: Insurers nevertheless need the exclusion, and companies should update their policy forms for exclusions from covering losses from government-run digital attacks, an insurance lawyer told an audience during a conference panel discussion.