FWD to sell bancassurance contract with Thailand's TMB Bank to Prudential unit

(Reuters) - Hong-Kong based insurer FWD Group said on Thursday that it would sell a contract for its bancassurance products with Thailand's TMB Bank TMB.BK to Prudential PLC's PRU.L life assurance arm in Thailand for 20 billion baht (532.56 million pounds).

Under the agreement, the transition period begins April 1, with the remaining term of FWD’s bancassurance contract entirely transferred to Prudential Thailand on Dec. 31, 2020.

In mid-2017, FWD and TMB Bank renewed the arrangement to sell the FWD product to the Thai bank’s distribution network for 15 years.

“FWD is fully committed to the continued growth of its business in Thailand through our multi-channel distribution strategy and will continue to invest in the market,” Huynh Thanh Phong, FWD Group’s chief executive officer, said in a statement.

The agreement buttresses FWD's presence in Thailand after buying Siam Commercial Bank PCL's SCB.BK life insurance arm for $3 billion (2.61 billion pounds) in 2019.

Owned by tycoon Richard Li, FWD has aggressively expanded its insurance footprint in Asia over the last few years, with its businesses now spread out in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Japan.

Reporting by Shruti Sonal in Bengaluru. Editing by Gerry Doyle