Tuesday 23 February 2021 2:30 pm

FTSE insurer Aviva confirms sale of French unit for €3.2bn to Aema Groupe

FTSE-listed insurance giant Aviva has sold its French unit to Aema for €3.2bn (£2.77bn).

The sale is central to chief executive Amanda Blanc’s turnaround plan aimed at shifting the insurer’s focus to core operations in the UK, Canada and Ireland after prolonged share price weakness has irked investors.

Shares in Aviva are up 0.5 per cent to 376p this afternoon.

Blanc said the sale of Aviva France was “very significant milestone in the delivery of our strategy”.

“It is an excellent outcome for shareholders, customers, employees and distributors. The transaction will increase Aviva’s financial strength, remove significant volatility and bring real focus to the Group.”

Aviva’s sell-off of of international assets recently include shedding its life-insurance business in Vietnam, another $2bn sale of a stake in its Singapore unit, and offloading its stake in an Italian life-insurance joint venture with UBI Banca.

The insurer also is looking to sell its operations in Poland for around €2bn.

Aema Groupe was formed in January through the merger of French mutual insurer Macif and Aésio Mutuelle, has 8m customers and a turnover of €8bn.

Aviva France has 3m customers and €7.8bn in revenue. It covers life insurance, property and casualty and asset management markets in France.

The transaction is expected to complete by the end of 2021.