Elkann’s PartnerRe to Acquire Aurigen Capital in Canada Push

  • PartnerRe to pay about $284 million, use cash on hand
  • Deal extends buyer’s push into life and health, CEO says

PartnerRe Ltd., the reinsurer owned by John Elkann’s Exor SpA, agreed to buy Aurigen Capital to expand in coverage of life policies in North America.

PartnerRe agreed to pay C$375 million ($284 million) in a deal expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2017, the companies said Thursday in a statement. The buyer will use cash on hand for the purchase, according to the statement.

Italy’s Exor has been reshaping PartnerRe after buying the company for about $6 billion this year. PartnerRe in August added Nikhil Srinivasan, chief investment officer of Assicurazioni Generali SpA, to its board as the company rearranges its investment portfolio, building property bets. Exor also controls Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Ferrari NV and has said reinsurance offers an opportunity to diversify operations.

Aurigen “will be a highly complementary addition to PartnerRe’s existing business,” which include property insurance and coverage in the aviation, marine and energy industries, Emmanuel Clarke, chief executive officer of the Bermuda-based buyer, said in the statement. The deal “aligns particularly well with our overall strategy to grow our Life and Health business.”

Aurigen had gross policy sales of $110 million in 2015, and the figure has been growing at a 16 percent compound annual growth rate over the past five years, according to the statement. PartnerRe said it expects the deal to add to book value per share in 2017.

The investment-banking division of Willis Towers Watson Plc is advising PartnerRe on the deal. Aurigen is using Evercore Partners Inc.

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