Chinese investors contemplate Prudential takeover, news report claims

14 September 2010

A group of Chinese investors are believed to be putting together a takeover bid for insurance firm Prudential, a news report has claimed.

According to the Sunday Times, the investors were among those who backed the Prudential’s collapsed bid for AIA, the Asian division of AIG.

Prudential was looking to acquire the business for $35 billion but the deal failed after a last-minute reduction to the acquisition price could not be negotiated.

Guo Guangchang, chairman of Fosun Group, Shan Weijian, chairman and chief executive of Pacific Alliance Group and Fred Hu, former chairman of Goldman Sachs’ Chinese division, are all believed to be involved in the recent discussions.

Peter Eliot, analyst with Berenberg Bank, told Reuters: “I wouldn't rule it out, with (Prudential's) rating being very attractive relative to Asian life companies.

"But at the same time, I wouldn't want to get too carried away. It's got to be seen in the context of other opportunities, including the AIA initial public offering.”

The failure of Prudential’s takeover bid for AIA is believed to have cost the firm an estimated £377 million.

By Jim Ottewill

Become a bobsguide member to access the following

1. Unrestricted access to bobsguide
2. Send a proposal request
3. Insights delivered daily to your inbox
4. Career development