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Discovery Jumps to Record on Singapore Deal: Johannesburg Mover

July 17 (Bloomberg) -- Discovery Ltd., South Africa’s largest medical-insurance provider, rose to a record after saying its wellness-based life-insurance model Vitality started in Singapore through a joint venture with AIA Group Ltd.

The stock jumped 6.6 percent, the most since Sept. 2008, to 92 rand at the close in Johannesburg, the highest since at least October 1999, when Bloomberg began compiling the data. About 1.6 million shares were traded, or 111 percent of the three-month daily average. Discovery was the second-best performer on the 166-member FTSE/JSE Africa All-Share Index today.

“With the way the stock is trading today, up 6 percent, it shows at least some investors are optimistic about the Vitality model roll-out in Singapore,” Ryan Wibberley, the head of equity dealing for frontier and emerging markets at Investec Asset Management, said by phone from Cape Town.

Discovery, 25 percent owned by investment holding company RMI Holdings Ltd., expects to invest the equivalent of less than 5 percent of pretax profit into the venture, the company said in a regulatory filing today. The model, called AIA Vitality, provides rewards for participating in wellness programs such as increasing fitness and healthy eating.

The venture provides an opportunity for Discovery to expand its footprint in the Asia-Pacific market, Chief Executive Officer Adrian Gore said in the statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jaco Visser in Johannesburg at avisser3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Vernon Wessels at vwessels@bloomberg.net

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