Magic Johnson’s Firm Buys EquiTrust Stake From Guggenheim

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Magic Johnson Enterprises said it completed the acquisition of a controlling interest in EquiTrust Life Insurance Co.

Guggenheim Partners LLC will continue to provide investment-management services for EquiTrust, according to an e-mailed statement that didn’t include terms. Guggenheim no longer owns a stake in the insurer, said Anthony Lacavaro, a spokesman for the New York-based company.

Earvin “Magic” Johnson’s firm, which announced the acquisition last year, also worked with Guggenheim Chief Executive Officer Mark Walter in 2012 to purchase the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team with a group of investors for more than $2 billion, partially funded through insurance companies owned by Guggenheim.

“EquiTrust provides MJE a tremendous platform,” said Johnson, 55, a three-time National Basketball Association most valuable player and 12-time all-star. “We will educate and emphasize the importance of life insurance for estate planning and annuities for retirement-planning purposes.”

Johnson’s firm invests in businesses that focus on multicultural and urban communities, according to its website. The Beverly Hills, California-based company was waiting for approval from the Illinois Department of Insurance to complete the EquiTrust purchase, Lacavaro said.

Guggenheim acquired the insurer in 2011 for $440 million in cash from FBL Financial Group Inc.

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