European life insurance and reinsurance group, Athora Holding, Ltd., has announced the completion of its previously announced acquisition of VIVAT N.V. from Anbang Group Holdings Co Limited, while NN Group has taken control of VIVAT Schadeverzekeringen N.V., VIVAT’s non-life operation.
The transaction was announced back in June of 2019 and signals Athora’s entry into the Dutch marketplace via the creation of stronger companies in the country’s life and non-life markets, as well as enhanced client offerings.
With the deal now finalised, VIVAT is now part of Athora’s European group of life insurance companies, which, according to Athora, confirms its position as a leading consolidator in Europe with comprehensive operations across the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, and Ireland.
As previously announced, today also marks the completion of the follow-on sale of VIVIAT Non-life to NN Group, which coupled with the Athora / VIVAT takeover is expected to result in a more competitive and stable insurance market in the country.
Athora explains that it intends to utilise VIVAT’s strong capabilities, robust operations and well-invested infrastructure across the group. At the same time, Athora has underlined its commitment in supporting VIVAT in order to better meet customer needs.
Athora Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Michele Bareggi, commented: “We are delighted to welcome VIVAT to the Athora family. We have a long-term vision and strategic commitment in the Dutch insurance market and VIVAT is the perfect local business for achieving our goals. Under the leadership of VIVAT’s CEO Tom Kliphuis, I am confident that VIVAT is set up to be the leading player in Dutch life & pension markets.”
The life re/insurance group notes that as part of its approved DNO application, it will implement a number of measures designed to ensure that VIVAT’s customers’ safety and security are enhanced following the deal. This includes a €400 million capital injection to strengthen VIVAT’s capital position; principles guiding VIVAT’s dividend policy and; a commitment to maintain the ongoing capitalisation of VIVAT at levels which ensure the long-term interests of customers.
At the same time, VIVAT has today launched a tender of its senior notes. According to Athora, this liability management exercise shows that the company is supportive of lowering VIVAT’s leverage and improving its financial strength.
Chairman of VIVAT’s Supervisory Board, Maarten Dijkshoorn, said: “With the additional financial resources committed to VIVAT and the combined capabilities of VIVAT and Athora, we will be best placed to fulfil our customers’ needs and to build further upon our already strong market positions. We believe that this transaction is highly beneficial to our valued customers.
“Together with the dedication and efforts of our employees and business partners, I am confident that VIVAT is well-positioned for the future and will continue to deliver the high service level towards our customers going forward. Additionally, together with Athora and NN Group, VIVAT will work towards a smooth integration of VIVAT Non-life into NN in the coming period.”
Supported by a recent equity capital raise of €1.8 billion from existing and new investors, Athora’s total dedicated equity capital commitment from global institutional investors stands at €4 billion. The company states that once the deal closes, it will have almost €1 billion of committed equity available to support Athora, VIVAT and existing subsidiaries moving forward.
VIVAT is to remain a Dutch-regulated entity and its insurance policies will remain in the Netherlands. In addition, the use of reinsurance arrangements whereby Dutch policies are removed from the country will not be implemented at VIVAT, explains Athora. Furthermore, VIVAT’s core customer brands Zwitserleven, Reaal and ACTIAM will also stay in the Dutch market.