Saturday 24 March 2018

Life insurance firm Partnership jumps 17pc to market value of €2.1bn on flotation debut

Kylie MacLellan

Private equity-backed life insurer Partnership Assurance Group was valued at more than £1.8bn (€2.1bn) in its London market debut this morning, after the shares opened trading at a 17pc premium to the listing price.


The shares opened trading at 450.5 pence, and by 0715 GMT were trading at 455.75 pence.

Partnership, which provides annuities which pay out more to customers with medical conditions as well as insurance to fund long-term residential care, said it had priced the offering at 385 pence a share, the upper half of its original 325-400 pence range.

At that price chief executive Steven Grove's stake was worth £48m. Groves netted £12m from selling a quarter of his holding in the initial public offering (IPO).

Majority owner Cinven, which acquired Partnership for £158m in 2008, said it had made a return of more than seven times its original investment.

The offering raised a total of £485m for the company and its selling shareholders, including £125m from new shares which Partnership said it would use to pay down debt.

The size of the sale could be increased by up to 15pc if there is strong demand. Assuming this so-called over-allotment option is exercised, Cinven will retain 52pc of the company following the listing.

The sale was 10 times oversubscribed at the listing price, two people familiar with the matter said, with 75pc of orders coming from UK and US mutual funds.

Blackrock bought a 3.4pc stake, offer documents showed, while the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) took 3.1pc.

Partnership Assurance, which claims a 26pc share of the £4.5bn non-standard annuities market in Britain, last month reported an operating profit of £112m in 2012, a 42pc increase on the year.

It expects to be eligible to join the FTSE250 index at the next review in September.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley were running the share offer.



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