By Julie Zhu
HONG KONG Oct 5 Shenzhen Qianhai Financial
Holdings (QFH) and Shenzhen Investment Holdings Corp (SIHC) have
agreed to buy ACR Capital Holdings Pte Ltd, the owner of
Singapore's biggest reinsurance firm, ACR said in a statement on
The two Shenzhen government-owned investment companies were
among a number of suitors, including Chinese conglomerate Fosun
International, bidding for ACR Capital, the holding
company of Asia Capital Reinsurance Group. The group has
operations in China, Japan and the Middle East.
Reuters previously reported that the ACR deal was valued at
about $1 billion.
The deal is the latest in a string by deep-pocketed Chinese
investors hunting for foreign insurance companies outside their
Mainland Chinese companies have splurged about $7 billion on
11 outbound acquisitions of insurance companies since the
beginning of last year, data compiled by Reuters showed.
QFH chairman Li Qiang said the company aims to "make Qianhai
(in Shenzhen) the national centre for reinsurance" through the
"We look forward to utilising ACR's leading pan-Asian
platform and professional underwriting capacity to promote other
domestic and overseas reinsurance business," he said in the
Asia and Australia account for less than 20 percent of
global reinsurance premiums, below what the region's population
and economic growth would warrant, Fitch Ratings said in a
report last year, citing industry estimates.
ACR's owners include London-based private equity firm 3i
Group, Malaysian state investor Khazanah Nasional, Singapore
state investor Temasek Holdings and Japanese trading house
3i Group will earn about 182 million pounds ($231.6 million)
from the sale of its stake in ACR, it said in a separate
statement on Wednesday.
The transaction, subject to regulatory approvals, including
from the Monetary Authority of Singapore, is expected to
complete by early next year.
ACR was set up in 2006 with capital of around $620 million
and is ranked among the world's top 50 reinsurers.
Morgan Stanley is the financial adviser to ACR, while Aon
Securities Inc is advising QFH.
($1 = 0.7859 pounds)
(Reporting by Julie Zhu; Editing by Clarence Fernandez and