March 5, 2018 / 6:19 AM / a year ago

Insurer AXA agrees to buy XL Group for around $15 bln

PARIS, March 5 (Reuters) - AXA, Europe's second-biggest insurer, has agreed to buy property and casualty insurance company XL Group for around $15 billion, in a deal which AXA said would create a world leader in its particular sector.

AXA said it was offering $57.60 for each XL share, representing a premium of 33 percent to XL's closing share price on March 2. The total consideration for the deal would amount to $15.3 billion.

"This transaction is a unique strategic opportunity for AXA to shift its business profile from predominantly life and savings business to predominantly property and casualty business, and will enable the Group to become the number 1 global property and casualty commercial lines insurer based on gross written premiums," said AXA chief executive Thomas Buberl.

"The transaction offers significant long-term value creation for our stakeholders with increased risk diversification, higher cash remittance potential and reinforced growth prospects. The future AXA will see its profile significantly rebalanced towards insurance risks and away from financial risks," he added. (Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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