Nationalised financial services group SNS Reaal has received permission from the Dutch central bank to sell its insurance arm to Chinese insurer Anbang for €1.
SNS Reaal was nationalised at the beginning of 2013 and divided into a banking arm (SNS Bank) and an insurance company (Reaal). The group posted a net loss of €712m in 2014, due to one-offs at its insurance arm. The bank itself, which will remain in state hands for some time, booked net profit of €151m.
Anbang was reported to have offered €150m for Reaal but is now paying a symbolic €1. In addition, the Chinese are to settle a tax demand of €85m, and invest €1.35bn in the weakened company.
‘Anbang has to invest a lot of capital to keep Reaal afloat,’ finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem said in a statement. ‘The consequence is that the price has been dropped. But Anbang is also clearing an internal loan of €552m. Reaal is getting a new chance, which is good news for the six million policy-holders.’
The sale has to be approved by the Chinese financial services regulator.
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