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HSBC to Acquire AXA Singapore

HSBC Insurance (Asia-Pacific) Holdings, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of HSBC Holdings, has entered into an agreement to acquire 100% of the issued share capital of AXA Insurance Pte Limited (AXA Singapore) for $575 million. The proposed acquisition, which is subject to regulatory approval, is a key step in achieving HSBC’s stated ambition of becoming a leading wealth manager in Asia, by expanding its insurance and wealth franchise in Singapore, a strategically important scale market for HSBC, and a major hub for its ASEAN wealth business.

Following deal completion, which is subject to regulatory approval, the intention is to merge the operations of HSBC Life Singapore and AXA Singapore, subject to further approval by the Singapore regulator and courts.

AXA Singapore is currently the 8th largest life insurer in Singapore by annualized new premiums, 5th largest property and casualty (P&C) insurer and a leading group health player. HSBC claims it is a good fit for its existing Singapore insurance business. Both businesses have complementary products across the spectrum of insurance solutions and distribution channels, while AXA Singapore provides access to a sizeable tied-agency sales force, several leading independent financial advisory firms, and a large pool of insurance policyholders and corporate relationships.

Noel Quinn, HSBC

Noel Quinn, Group Chief Executive, HSBC Holdings, commented: “This is an important acquisition that demonstrates our ambition to grow our Wealth business across Asia. Wealth is one of our highest growth and highest return opportunities, and plays to our strengths as an Asia-centered bank with global reach. We are acquiring a good business that fits well with our existing operations, and which strengthens our status as one of Asia’s leading wealth and insurance providers.”

Nuno Matos, Chief Executive, Wealth and Personal Banking, added: “This strategic investment is a key milestone for HSBC Life to materially scale up, grow and diversify our insurance and wealth business in Singapore. Burgeoning affluent and high net worth populations in Singapore and across Southeast Asia will drive strong demand for an array of wealth, health and insurance solutions for individuals, their families and SMEs.”

In February 2020, HSBC combined its mass affluent, asset management, insurance and private banking businesses to create Wealth and Personal Banking. Asia generates nearly half of HSBC’s $1.7trn global wealth balances and 65% of the Group’s wealth revenues.