UK major Legal & General has exited Indian market by selling its entire stake of 26 per cent in IndiaFirst Life Insurance Company to private equity major Warburg Pincus.
The deal subject to approval from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India, along with other regulatory approvals, is believed to be valued around Rs 710 crore. Ambit Private Limited was the exclusive financial advisor for the transaction.
Simon Burke, Group Commercial Director, Legal & General said that the company has refocused its insurance business in recent years on the UK and the US and as a consequence we have disposed of a number of operations, including our businesses in The Netherlands, Ireland, France, Egypt and The Gulf. We are now following this strategy in relation to our stake in IndiaFirst Life.
Earlier in 2017, South African major Old Mutual had also existed Indian life insurance market by selling its stakes to the Indian partner Kotak Bank to focus on other international markets.
P.S. Jayakumar, Chairman, IndiaFirst Life and MD and CEO, Bank of Baroda said: “Legal & General has been a steady and supportive partner and we regret their decision to exit in wake of the larger strategy of the group.’’
R.M. Vishakha, Managing Director and CEO, IndiaFirst
R.M. Vishakha, Managing Director and CEO, IndiaFirst Life, said: “We look forward to scaling new heights and creating immense value under the combined guidance of our shareholders.”
Narendra Ostawal, Managing Director, Warburg Pincus, said: “IndiaFirst Life has demonstrated remarkable performance over the last few years and we , look forward to backing R.M. Vishakha and the management team of IndiaFirst Life, and supporting them to create one of India’s leading life insurance companies.”
IndiaFirst Life Insurance is one of country’s youngest life insurance joint venture among Bank of Baroda, which owns a 44% stake, Andhra Bank, which holds 30%, and Legal & General.
IndiaFirst Life had an asset under management (AUM) of Rs 12,622 crore as on March 31, 2018, compared with Rs 10,858 crore as on March 31, 2017. The company had reported 46% growth in net profit at Rs 51 crore during FY18, against a PAT of Rs 35 crore in FY17. The company issued over 1.84 lakh policies in FY18, compared with 1.26 lakh policies in FY17.
Warburg has a wide exposure in Indian financial services space with its investments in AU Financiers and Capital First Ltd.