The FINANCIAL — Zurich Financial Services Group (Zurich) announced on October 11 that its subsidiary Zurich Insurance Company Ltd has signed an agreement to acquire 99.98% of Compagnie Libanaise D’Assurances SAL, a privately owned Lebanese insurer with branch operations in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Kuwait and Oman.
Subject to the approval of the relevant regulatory authorities, the transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2010.
Established in 1951 and headquartered in Beirut, Compagnie Libanaise D’Assurances today offers general insurance solutions to retail and commercial customers in the UAE, Kuwait, Oman and Lebanon, and it also offers individual and group life insurance solutions to customers in Lebanon. At the end of 2009 Compagnie Libanaise D’Assurances had gross written premiums of USD 49.1 million and net income after tax of USD 5.1 million. Through this transaction, Zurich will be in a position to offer its full product range to customers and distribution partners in these four new markets.
Saad Mered, Zurich’s CEO Middle East, said: “The acquisition of Compagnie Libanaise D’Assurances marks a key milestone for us as we accelerate the expansion of our operations in the Middle East. It will give us access to personal and commercial customer segments in four important markets, and complements our existing general insurance presence in Bahrain and the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC); through which we are already delivering tailor made insurance solutions to large corporate customers. We will combine Compagnie Libanaise D’Assurances’s deep understanding of the region with Zurich’s global expertise to deliver market leading products and servicing to customers and distribution partners.”