Novae confirms Omega talks

LLOYD’S insurer Novae ended speculation about its plans to merge with rival Omega Insurance yesterday, confirming it had opened Omega’s books.

Novae, which wrote £587.7m of insurance in 2010, said it was undertaking due diligence to evaluate the merits of a possible merger.

It joins unlisted Lloyd’s insurer Canopius among named bidders for Omega, as well as unconfirmed bids from Delphi Financial and Barbican Insurance in the past five months.

However, discussions with Canopius have taken months and analysts said it may take a while to finalise any bid.