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Daily Insurance Industry News
Sunday 26th of May 2019
July 7, 2008

Friends loses Swiss Life interest in Lombard sale

by Gill Montia

Story link: Friends loses Swiss Life interest in Lombard sale

Friends Provident saw its share price fall sharply on Friday of last week, on rumours that Swiss Life is no longer interested in acquiring the group’s Lombard business.

In January of this year, the life and pensions provider took the decision to sell businesses that were no longer considered part of its core insurance operations.

The move followed the failure of the group’s merger negotiations with Resolution, the closed life fund consolidator.

Lombard specialises in tax-efficient investment for high net worth individuals and at the time the sale was announced was valued at up to £1 billion.

The group is also looking for a buyer for its 52% stake in F&C Asset Management and for Pantheon, a firm of financial adviser acquired in 2007.

A number of bidders have shown interest in F&C and it is understood that private equity groups Hellman & Friedman and CVC Capital Partners remain in the bidding for Lombard.

However, current credit conditions could necessitate a review of the entire disposal programme.

In addition, Friends’ new chief executive, Trevor Matthews, will formally take up his role this month and will no doubt be assessing the situation anew.

 

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