Germany’s Allianz plans to pay $35 million for 98 percent stake in Nigerian insurer, Ensure Insurance, in a push for growth in Africa, where many people are uninsured.
Foreign insurers are banking on growing premiums as the continent develops its infrastructure and a consumer class demands protection from risk.
Allianz expects the acquisition to close this year and said it intends to retain Ensure’s management team.
The German insurer plans to focus on property and casualty insurance, particularly underwriting industrial and speciality risk in the energy sector as well a large complex risks such as infrastructure.
Allianz said that it will acquire the stake from UK-based holding company Greenoaks Global Holdings.
Allianz Africa spokesperson, Bettina Sattler said the transaction gives Allianz access to the fifth-largest insurance market in Africa in line with its strategy to capture long-term growth opportunities on the continent.
“It is also a market with significant entry barriers, which is another reason why this acquisition is a great opportunity for us. Entering Nigeria with a team that knows the market was essential for us,” she said.
“In the past two years, we have been quite visible in Nigeria, sharing our risk-management expertise in power, oil and gas, as well as cyber insurance.”
“Now that we have a company locally…the retail sector is another growth sector for us,” Sattler said.
France’s AXA acquired Nigeria’s fourth-largest insurer Mansard Insurance three years ago.