Canadian Underwriter

Groupama U.K. operations on the block

July 26, 2001   by Canadian Underwriter

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Following the sale of its North and South American reinsurance operations, Groupama has now put its U.K. insurance subsidiary up for bids. Earlier this year the French mutual, also known as Caise Centrale des Assurances Mutuelles Agricoles, announced the sale of Sorema S.A. and Sorema N.A. to Scor, boosting its share in Scor to more than 17%. At the time, Groupama cited the desire to focus on its European business.
It comes as no surprise that Groupama is now trying to sell the U.K. multi-line insurance operations, Groupama Insurance Co. Ltd. and Groupama General Insurance Co. Ltd.. Both companies were recently placed on credit watch by rating agency Standard & Poor’s, who cited the belief that the operations would be sold in its assessment.
In the rating, Standard & Poor’s notes that the companies’ capitalization was weakened following a reported loss of US$63.6 million in 2000. Groupama expects the sale to be completed by the end of the year.

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