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Jul 22, 2012

Insight: Flood risk rampant across Asia’s factory zones

BANGKOK/HONG KONG (Reuters) – Global insurance companies are struggling to get a grip on their flood exposure in Asia nearly a year after one of the world’s costliest disasters hit Thailand, with executives fearing an even worse event looms in the region.

Some firms learnt from the Thai floods, with new defenses built to protect multi-billion dollar industrial estates in the country. Insurance premiums have also gone up, but factory construction in flood-prone areas remains rampant across Asia.

Jul 22, 2012

Flood risk rampant across Asia’s factory zones

BANGKOK/HONG KONG July 23 (Reuters) – Global insurance
companies are struggling to get a grip on their flood exposure
in Asia nearly a year after one of the world’s costliest
disasters hit Thailand, with ex e cutives fearing an even worse
event looms in the region.

Some firms learnt from the Thai floods, with new defences
built to protect multi-billion dollar industrial estates in the
country. Insurance premiums have also gone up, but factory
construction in flood-prone areas remains rampant across Asia.

Jul 15, 2012

AIA, Manulife crunch numbers as final ING bids loom

HONG KONG, July 16 (Reuters) – A wide range of suitors, from
the son of Asia’s richest man and a former rugby player in New
Zealand to more established players including AIA Group
and Manulife Financial Corp, are expected to
submit binding bids on Monday for ING Groep’s Asia
insurance business in a deal that could top $7 billion.

ING is selling its Asian life insurance and its asset
management units in the region as it needs to repay bail-out
funds it received from the Dutch government during the 2008
financial crisis. Since the bail-out, ING has sold 15.2 billion
euros ($18.6 billion) worth of assets around the world.

Jul 4, 2012

Global insurers expanding in Southeast Asia turn to Cambodia

HONG KONG, July 4 (Reuters) – Two global life insurers are
opening offices in Cambodia, one of Southeast Asia’s few
untapped insurance markets, as they strengthen their foothold in
a region that could eventually be a key driver of revenue
growth.

Britain’s No. 1 insurer Prudential said on Monday it
won in-principle approval from the Cambodian government to open
a wholly foreign-owned life insurance operation. The
announcement came within a week of Canada’s top insurer Manulife
saying it would set up its country office in Phnom Penh.

Jun 4, 2012

Analysis: Chinese drivers pose fresh risks for foreign insurers

HONG KONG (Reuters) – “People like us who buy Ferraris don’t care too much about insurance because we buy cars for speeding,” said Li, in his twenties and the son of a Pearl River Delta factory owner, as he took delivery of a new 5 million yuan ($787,500) 458 Spider, his fourth red Ferrari. “If we crash, we just throw them away.”

Drivers like Li, who gave only his family name, illustrate the challenges that big global insurers such as Allianz (ALVG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), AXA (AXAF.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Chartis face as they move further into China under new rules allowing foreign firms to offer a full range of insurance products in the world’s largest car market.

Jun 4, 2012

Chinese drivers pose fresh risks for foreign insurers

HONG KONG, June 5 (Reuters) – “People like us who buy
Ferraris don’t care too much about insurance because we buy cars
for speeding,” said Li, in his twenties and the son of a Pearl
River Delta factory owner, as he took delivery of a new 5
million yuan ($787,500) 458 Spider, his fourth red Ferrari. “If
we crash, we just throw them away.”

Drivers like Li, who gave only his family name, illustrate
the challenges that big global insurers such as Allianz
(ALVG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research), AXA (AXAF.PA: Quote, Profile, Research) and Chartis face as they move further
into China under new rules allowing foreign firms to offer a
full range of insurance products in the world’s largest car
market.

May 24, 2012

Aviva adds S.Korea, Sri Lanka to Asia exit list: sources

HONG KONG (Reuters) – British insurer Aviva plc (AV.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is putting its South Korean and Sri Lankan businesses on the auction block, sources with knowledge of the matter said, adding to its list of Asia divisions it is selling to help raise money to protect against its euro zone exposure.

Britain’s second-biggest insurer laid out plans last week to sell underperforming businesses around the world, a move meant to address the company’s greater exposure to the troubled euro zone compared with rivals, and to boost a share price that is down more than 36 percent in the past year.

May 24, 2012

Aviva adds South Korea, Sri Lanka to Asia exit list – sources

HONG KONG (Reuters) – British insurer Aviva plc (AV.L: Quote, Profile, Research) is putting its South Korean and Sri Lankan businesses on the auction block, sources with knowledge of the matter said, adding to its list of Asia divisions it is selling to help raise money to protect against its euro zone exposure.

Britain’s second-biggest insurer laid out plans last week to sell underperforming businesses around the world, a move meant to address the company’s greater exposure to the troubled euro zone compared with rivals, and to boost a share price that is down more than 36 percent in the past year.

May 9, 2012

Aviva puts Malaysian business on block – sources

HONG KONG, May 9 (Reuters) – Aviva has put its
Malaysian operations on the block and is close to hiring a bank
to help with the sale process, sources said on Wednesday, as the
British insurer moves ahead with a plan to exit non-core
markets.

The deal, which is in its early stages, could fetch about
$200 million and comes at the same time that Dutch financial
company is exiting its Asian insurance and investment
management operations.

May 3, 2012

HSBC sells general insurance biz for $914 million

HONG KONG (Reuters) – HSBC (HSBA.L: Quote, Profile, Research) has agreed to sell its general insurance businesses to AXA Group and QBE Insurance Group for a cash consideration of $914 million, as Europe’s biggest bank moves ahead with its plan to divest non-core assets.

The deal, the latest in a series of cost cut initiatives under the new HSBC CEO Stuart Gulliver, includes a 10-year bancassurance agreements with AXA and QBE.

    • About Clare

      "I am based in New York and write about IPOs and wealth management. I was formerly based in San Francisco, where I wrote about tech companies."
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