French insurer AXA announced Wednesday it was selling its wrap platform business “Elevate” to Standard Life, marking another step in the company’s withdrawal from parts of Europe that are witnessing slow business growth. The deal for the United Kingdom assets, subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to be completed in the second half of 2016, a statement from AXA said.
The insurer is also in talks to sell its remaining U.K. life and savings assets, which include its direct protection business under the “SunLife” brand and its traditional non-platform investment and pension business. The company will keep its property and casualty, and health and asset management businesses in the U.K., it said.
The value of the deal with Standard Life was not disclosed, but AXA said in the announcement it expected its entire life and savings business to fetch about 650 million pounds (approximately $945 million).
Paul Evans, CEO of AXA U.K., said the U.K. life and savings businesses “could be even more successful if supported by organizations with a stronger strategic focus on the Life & Savings segment. These transactions would allow AXA to rebalance the focus of its UK activities towards Property & Casualty, Health and Asset Management.”
Once Standard Life takes over the 160,000 Elevate customers and 9.8 billion pounds of their assets, its combined business will serve 350,000 customers and 36.4 billion pounds under management, according to the Telegraph. Standard Life will fund the acquisition from its existing cash resources.
On April 28, AXA had announced the sale of its U.K. offshore investment bonds business, based in the Isle of Man, to Life Company Consolidation Group. Terms of that deal were also not disclosed.