Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Co., Japan’s third-biggest life insurer, agreed to buy a 15 percent stake in privately-owned Thai Life Insurance Pcl, two people with knowledge of the matter said.
The deal is worth about 70 billion yen ($707 million) and may be announced as soon as today, one of the people said, asking not to be identified as the process is private.
Insurers from London to Tokyo, attracted by Southeast Asia’s emerging middle class, have spent over $6 billion acquiring assets in the region over the past two years, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Japan’s Dai-ichi Life Insurance Co. agreed to buy 40 percent of PT Panin Financial Tbk’s life insurance unit in Indonesia for 3.3 trillion rupiah ($330 million) in June.
Tokyo-based Meiji Yasuda is building its overseas insurance business and seeking to expand in markets including Asia and South America, according to its website. In Indonesia, Meiji increased its shareholding in PT Avrist Assurance from 5 percent to 23 percent in May last year.
Spokesmen for Meiji Yasuda and Thai Life declined to comment on the transaction.
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