SOUTH African health insurance firm Discovery has purchased PruHealth and PruProtect from parent company Prudential Assurance, the UK subsidiary of Prudential.
Discovery paid £155m for the remaining 25 per cent equity stake in the joint venture, which was initially established as an equally owned venture between Discovery and Prudential. In 2010, Discovery upped its shareholding to 75 per cent.
According to the South African firm, the deal, which values Pru Health and PruProtect at £620m, supports its “ambition to establish a second home market in the UK”.
Adrian Gore, Discovery chief executive, commented: “We are tremendously excited about this major strategic milestone for Discovery. Discovery’s increased investment in the UK has always been part of our longer-term strategy. It will afford us the opportunity to realise our vision to further entrench our insurance model and to be recognised as the best protection provider in the UK.”
Jackie Hunt, chief executive of Prudential UK, Europe and Africa, said the transaction would give the company the commercial flexibility to “consider operating freely in the UK protection market in due course”.