Major player buys life insurance

Macquarie Group has announced it has entered into an agreement to sell its life insurance business to a major insurer.

Zurich Australia has made the acquisition, which is subject to regulatory and court approvals, and is expected to be completed in the second half of the 2016 calendar year.

Macquarie Life’s Australian-based staff will transfer to Zurich as part of the acquisition.

“Our Australian life business has experienced strong growth – over the last 5 years in particular,” Zurich Asia Pacific Global Life CEO Colin Morgan says.

“Our growth ambitions in the Asia Pacific region are underpinned by a strategy which drives value from our balanced portfolio of growth and mature markets and leverages our distinctive capabilities across the region.

“This acquisition accelerates that strategy.”

Zurich says their immediate priority will be to provide both the staff and customers of Macquarie Life with certainty and continuity.

Macquarie Head of Banking and Financial Services Group Greg Ward says Macquarie Life is a well performing business and has been recognised by the industry for its innovation and commitment to customer service.

“The sale of the business reflects the need for significant scale in the capital intensive life insurance industry in order to drive appropriate returns,” he says.

“Zurich’s expertise, global reach and customer focus mean they are ideally positioned to continue providing high quality insurance products and services to Macquarie Life customers.”

Existing Macquarie Life policyholders will ultimately become customers of Zurich, with no change to the terms and conditions of their coverage.

Macquarie Life’s products will continue to be offered to new customers under the Macquarie brand up until the completion of the sale.