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Swiss Life takes over group life business from Nationale Suisse and reaches distribution agreement

18.01.2011

Swiss Life is taking over Nationale Suisse’s entire group life business and, as a result, is strengthening its position as one of the leading providers of BVG solutions for Swiss companies. The two insurance companies are also concluding a distribution agreement: Nationale Suisse will exclusively offer group life products from Swiss Life in future, while Swiss Life will offer its customers selected non-life products from Nationale Suisse. 32 Nationale Suisse employees will be taken on by Swiss Life.

Swiss Life, the reference for private and corporate clients in the Swiss pensions market, is taking over Nationale Suisse’s group life business with retroactive effect from 1 January 2011. Ivo Furrer, Swiss Life’s CEO Switzerland, says, “The group life portfolio of Nationale Suisse fits well with our strategy of profitable growth. We can offer first-class benefits, a strong service-oriented and customer-centric approach, and the highest interest on retirement savings in the market to its more than 3100 companies representing around 23 000 insured persons.” The transaction will be completed in the first six months of 2011, subject to approval by the relevant authorities. The sale price will not be announced.

Exploiting synergies lowers expense ratios for the insured
In 2009, gross premiums from the Nationale Suisse portfolio came to CHF 223 million (Swiss Life: CHF 5.88 billion), with a mathematical reserve of CHF 1.55 billion (Swiss Life: CHF 43.08 billion). The takeover allows Swiss Life to realise cost synergies within the single-digit million range and thus to further reduce the expense ratio for group business. This will ultimately benefit all affiliated companies and their insured persons. Swiss Life is also opening up a new distribution channel for its product portfolio as a full-range provider of second pillar insurance. “The exclusive distribution of Swiss Life products through the Nationale Suisse sales force creates new opportunities for us in what remains a hard-fought market. With our broad range extending from full insurance to pension fund advisory services, we offer a customised BVG solution for every company,” says Ivo Furrer. The distribution agreement also enables Swiss Life’s sales force to sell specialised non-life products, such as art insurance, from the Nationale Suisse range.

Swiss Life takes on employees
The 32 employees of Nationale Suisse, who were in charge of group life business until now, will be taken on by Swiss Life under the same conditions. They will also be given the assurance that there will be no job reductions due to economic necessity at least until 31 March 2012. Swiss Life intends to integrate the management of Nationale Suisse’s portfolio into its own structures in the medium term. In doing so, it will offer the employees new prospects internally wherever possible or will support them individually in their professional reorientation externally within the scope of the programme of measures agreed with the social partners.

Swiss Life
The Swiss Life Group is one of Europe's leading providers of life insurance and pension solutions. In Switzerland, France and Germany, the Group offers individuals and corporations comprehensive advice and a broad range of products through its own sales force as well as brokers and banks. Swiss Life provides international corporations with employee benefits solutions from a single source, and is one of the global leaders in structured life and pension products for international high net worth individuals.

The AWD Group has been part of the Swiss Life Group since 2008. Hanover-based AWD is one of the leading European financial services providers in the medium- and high-income client segments and offers its clients personal and holistic financial planning in eight countries.

Swiss Life Holding Ltd, registered in Zurich, was founded in 1857 as Schweizerische Rentenanstalt. The shares of Swiss Life Holding Ltd are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange (SLHN). The Swiss Life Group employs a staff of around 8200.

Cautionary statement regarding forward-looking information
This publication contains specific forward-looking statements, e.g. statements including terms like “believe”, “assume”, “expect” or similar expressions. Such forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors which may result in a substantial divergence between the actual results, financial situation, development, performance or expectations of Swiss Life and those explicitly or implicitly presumed in these statements. Against the background of these uncertainties, readers are cautioned that these statements are only projections and that no undue reliance should be placed on such forward-looking statements. Neither Swiss Life nor any of its directors, officers, employees or advisors nor any other person connected or otherwise associated with Swiss Life makes any representation or warranty, express or implied, as to the accuracy or completeness of the information contained in this publication. Neither Swiss Life nor any of the aforementioned persons shall have any liability whatsoever for loss howsoever arising, directly or indirectly, from any use of this information. Furthermore, Swiss Life assumes no responsibility to publicly update or alter its forward-looking statements or to adapt them, whether as a result of new information, future events or developments or any other reason.
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