Chubb Ltd. is in advanced talks to form an insurance partnership with Hang Seng Bank Ltd., a Hong Kong-based lender majority owned by HSBC Holdings Plc, according to people familiar with the matter.
The parties are hammering out the details of a transaction that could be agreed over the coming weeks, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. Chubb, based in Zurich, is poised to become Hang Seng Bank’s insurance partner after outbidding other insurers that had shown interest in the tie-up, the people said.
A deal would help the world’s largest publicly traded property and casualty insurance company boost its presence in the Asian financial hub, the people said. Talks are ongoing and could still fall apart, the people said.
A representative for Hang Seng Bank declined to comment, while a representative for Chubb didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
Hang Seng Bank has been working with a financial adviser as it explores a so-called bancassurance partnership after its existing agreement with Australia’s QBE Insurance Group Ltd. expired, Bloomberg News has reported. Under such an arrangement, an insurer typically pays an upfront amount to sell its products in the bank’s branches.
Chubb completed its $5.36 billion purchase of Cigna Corp.’s life, accident and supplemental businesses in six places in July. The acquisition by the US-founded firm was aimed at expanding its operations in Asia Pacific.
Hang Seng Bank, founded in 1933, provides banking, investment and wealth management services for individuals and businesses, according to its website. It counts more than 3.5 million customers. Beyond Hong Kong, the bank also has a presence in almost 20 major cities in mainland China, as well as in Macau, Singapore and Taipei. HSBC owns about 62% of Hang Seng Bank, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Photograph: Signage for Hang Seng Bank Ltd. is displayed outside the bank’s headquarters in Hong Kong, China, on Monday, Feb. 22, 2016. Photo credit: Xaume Olleros/Bloomberg
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