Zurich Insurance Weighs Selling Some Australian Assets

This content was published on September 16, 2021 - 11:35

(Bloomberg) -- Zurich Insurance Group AG is considering a sale of some of its general insurance assets in Australia as the Swiss firm seeks to streamline its portfolio, according to people familiar with the matter.

The insurer is working with an adviser on the potential divestment of non-core commercial assets in the country, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. A sale could fetch a few hundred million dollars, and may draw interest from other insurers and investment funds, the people said.

Sale considerations are still preliminary and no final decision has been made, the people said. A representative for Zurich declined to comment.

The Swiss firm has grown its Australia business through acquisitions. It bought Sydney-based travel insurer Cover-More Group Ltd. for about A$741 million ($542 million) in 2017. That year, Zurich also agreed to acquire Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd.’s life-insurance businesses for A$2.85 billion. The deal completed in 2019.

Zurich is not looking at big M&A transactions as they could be a “distraction” amid the need for change in the industry, Chief Executive Officer Mario Greco said in Bloomberg Television interview earlier this month.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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