Bupa Insurance is bidding for HSBC’s medical insurance business in Asia, reports Bloomberg, which cited a source who declined to be identified as talks are private.
AXA, Europe’s second-largest insurer, and ACE are in talks to buy the entire non-life unit of HSBC, which may be valued at about US$1 billion, to speed up expansion in Asia. Sydney-based QBE Insurance Group is also considering a bid for the business, according to the article. A buyer may be chosen in late February.
Bidders are negotiating with HSBC on how profits will be distributed from policies that are sold through the bank’s branch network.HSBC and ING Groep NV are among European banks selling assets as lenders try to adjust to stricter global capital rules. HSBC reported US$1 billion of net written insurance premiums for its non-life business in 2011, with Asia accounting for about a third of the total.
ING, under European Union orders to divest its insurance operations, may draw bids from rivals including AIA Group.