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Resolution opens negotiations with Axa over life assurance merger

Negotiations have been launched between Resolution and Axa over a possible merger.

14 June 2010

Resolution has confirmed that it has started negotiations with Axa as it looks to acquire its UK life assurance businesses.

The group, which already owns Friends Provident, has outlined its plans to launch a £2 billion rights issue in order to finance the proposed £2.75 billion deal.

By merging Axa's UK businesses with its existing Friends Provident operations, Resolution would become Britain's biggest life insurance provider, with the deal enabling both the company and its customers to benefit from significant savings.

Commenting on the plans, Resolution chief executive John Tiner said in a statement: "This acquisition would build strong momentum in Resolution's life assurance consolidation project, and provides a range of options for further activity."

In particular, it is intended that the initiative would rationalise sales and enable savings in the areas of sales and marketing, though workers' unions have already warned that such a merger is likely to lead to job losses.

Meanwhile, the New Zealand Commerce Commission has further delayed its ruling on AMP's proposed acquisition of Axa Asia Pacific Holdings.

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