(Repeats story from late on Friday)
* Deal value estimated at up to $350 million - sources
* DBS seeking insurance partner for its main markets -
* DBS has tie-up with units of Japan's MS&AD Insurance since
By Anshuman Daga and Sumeet Chatterjee
SINGAPORE/HONG KONG, May 5 DBS Group
plans to invite bids from insurers keen to sell general
insurance products across the key markets of Southeast Asia's
biggest lender, in a deal potentially worth up to $350 million,
sources familiar with the matter said.
The move underscores the under-penetrated region's growing
attraction to insurers who see a big opportunity to boost
business as rising incomes generate demand for property, motor
and travel insurance products.
In the last few years, banks such as Standard Chartered
and CIMB Group have formed partnerships with
insurers as they were willing to pay hefty fees for access to
lenders' branch networks and digital platforms.
DBS, which has partnerships with subsidiaries of Japanese
group MS&AD Insurance Group Holdings Inc since 2005,
plans to seek bids from insurers as soon as next month, three
sources told Reuters. They declined to be identified as the news
is not public.
Two of the sources said the 15-year deal is estimated to be
valued at up to $350 million, but it could change depending on
the deal's structure and sales assumptions made by the bidders.
DBS is expected to pick one or two insurance partners for
the deal, which could cover all of its key markets of Singapore,
Hong Kong, Indonesia, India, China and Taiwan.
MS&AD's units are expected to participate in the bidding
process, which is also likely to draw interest from France's AXA
, Italy's Generali and Australia's QBE
Insurance Group Ltd, the sources said.
DBS, AXA, Generali, and QBE declined to comment. There was
no immediate comment from MSIG Asia, a subsidiary of Mitsui
Sumitomo Insurance Company Ltd to Reuters queries.
DBS has more than 7 million customers across its consumer,
banking and wealth management businesses spread in 18 markets
but the majority of these are from its key markets.
The bank has spent billions of dollars in the last few years
to digitise its businesses.
One source said DBS was likely to leverage general insurance
distribution partnership as a value-add offering for its wealth
management clients. The sales volume for general insurance
products tend to be lower than the mass-market life business.
The sources said DBS was likely to complete talks and seal
the deal by the end of the year.
DBS' plan to seek partners follows the bank's move last year
to allow Canada's Manulife insurer to sell life
insurance through its Asia network in a 15-year deal.
Reuters reported in March that Citigroup will seek
bids from global insurers keen to sell general insurance
products across the U.S. bank's Asia-Pacific markets, in a deal
that could be worth at least $500 million.
In January, StanChart and Allianz announced a
15-year deal that enabled the German insurer to sell its general
insurance products to StanChart's customers in five Asian
(Reporting by Anshuman Daga and Sumeet Chatterjee; Editing by