China Reinsurance (Group) Corp. announced it has completed the 100 percent equity acquisition of Chaucer Holdings Ltd. — the major portion of Hanover Insurance Group’s Lloyd’s international specialty business.
The acquisition of Chaucer Insurance Co. DAC (Chaucer Dublin) and Hanover Australia Hold Co. Pty Ltd (SLE) remain subject to local regulatory approval and is expected to close by the end of first quarter in 2019.
China Re is acquiring Chaucer for total proceeds of $930 million to $940 million, said a statement issued by Hanover Insurance Group. The deal was completed on Dec. 28 and was first announced in September 2018.
China Re said the purchase of London-based Chaucer is a significant move for China Re, marking a milestone in the expansion of its global footprint, given the fact that Chaucer is a top quartile player in the Lloyd’s market and a quality global re/insurer.
The acquisition is expected to benefit China Re from synergies with its existing entities and Chaucer in terms of business platforms, products and technical know-how. China Re said it aims to strengthen its core reinsurance business, enhance its global market position and better serve China’s Belt & Road Initiative.*
China Re plans to transfer Syndicate 2088 into Chaucer’s Managing Agency, subject to regulatory approval.
“With this transaction largely complete, we are excited to focus exclusively on the continued expansion of our distinctive domestic business,” said John C. Roche, president and chief executive officer at The Hanover, in a statement.
“With a strong financial foundation, clear strategic focus, and a simplified operating structure, we are determined to be the premier property and casualty company in the independent agency channel,” added Roche. “We will continue to build our organization around the needs of our agent partners, offering relevant and responsive insurance solutions to our partners and customers, and delivering superior returns for our shareholders.”
“This is an exciting time for China Re. We are very pleased to have gained the regulatory approvals to complete the acquisition of Chaucer Holdings Ltd.,” said Yuan Linjiang, chairman of China Re.
“This deal fits China Re’s strategic positioning of ‘reinsurance as the core business’ and the pursuit of international development in our ‘One Core, Three Breakthroughs and Five Cross-overs’ corporate strategy,” he added. “We expect to take advantage of Chaucer’s business platforms across the world to maximize the opportunities for mutually beneficial growth.”
He Chunlei, vice chairman and president of China Re, commented: “Chaucer is an outstanding performer in the Lloyd’s market run by a well-respected management team with business access to more than 200 countries and regions across the world. The acquisition of Chaucer will expand China Re’s global reach and raise our profile in the international markets.”
“This is an auspicious day for Chaucer, our clients and for China Re as this significantly enhances the strength of our market offering and creates new global opportunities to explore, including those from the Belt and Road initiative,” said John Fowle, chief executive officer at Chaucer. “The completion of this transaction marks a significant milestone in our history and we are ready to accelerate our business development and growth with the support of China Re.”
Aon Securities acted as the financial adviser and Sidley Austin LLP provided legal advice to China Re in this transaction.
* Launched by China in 2013, the Belt & Road Initiative, also known as “one belt, one road,” is an ongoing project to invest billions of dollars in infrastructure in countries across Asia, Africa and Europe.