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European firms consider Barclay's Vie bid

European insurers are looking to take over half of Barclays French life insurance division

02 June 2010

A host of European insurers are seeking to negotiate the acquisition of a 50 per cent stake in Barclays Vie, it has been revealed.

Barclays are looking to offload half of their French life insurance business for around £54.2 million, reports City AM.

Last week, the bank held preliminary talks with various major insurers to begin the bidding process.

French groups CNP Assurances, Axa and La Mondiale are among the parties reportedly interested in any possible deal.

Other firms such as Britain's Aviva, Germany's Allianz, Italian insurer Generali and Swiss Life have also tabled a preliminary offer of interest.

Any potential partnership is likely to be similar to Barclay's deal to sell half of its Iberian life insurance division - Barclays Vida y Pensiones Compañía de Seguro - to CNP Assurances last year.

CNP paid an initial €140 million (£117 million) in cash for the stake, with an additional payment of €450 million (£377 million) dependant on the success of the joint venture.

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