Baloise Acquires Fidea
Baloise is acquiring the Belgian multi-sector insurer Fidea NV from the Chinese Anbang Insurance Group for EUR 480m, thereby significantly strengthening its position in the Belgian market. The acquisition also diversifies the non-life portfolio within the Group. With a 37% share of the total volume, the Belgian non-life business is now roughly the same size as that of the Swiss business unit.
Fidea reported premiums of CHF 351.6 million for 2018, more than two thirds of which came from the attractive non-life business. In keeping with the Baloise business strategy, Fidea’s non-life business mainly concentrates on the growth segments in the retail customers business and on business with small and medium-sized companies. Fidea is based in Antwerp and employs around 360 staff, who will transfer to Baloise under the deal.
“The acquisition of Fidea fits perfectly with our Simply Safe strategy, both in terms of strengthening the core business in our focus markets and the highly innovative and experimental approach to digitalisation. The acquisition and resulting synergies will provide a long-term boost to our growth potential and earnings power and give us additional market share in the attractive Belgian market.” – Group CEO Gert De Winter.
In Belgium, the Baloise Group operates under the ‘Baloise Insurance’ brand. It offers a full range of insurance services for individuals and for small and medium-sized firms. Policies are sold through a country-wide network of brokers. In 2018, Baloise in Belgium generated profit before borrowing costs and taxes (EBIT) of CHF 199.0 from a volume of business that amounted to CHF 1,722.3 million. Including Fidea, Baloise will employ around 1,600 staff in Belgium.
The transaction has yet to be approved by the relevant competition and regulatory authorities and is expected to be completed during the second half of this year.