RSA Insurance Group plc, which received a takeover approach from Zurich Insurance Group AG, agreed to sell its Latin American operations to Suramericana SA for about 403 million pounds ($620 million) in cash.
The sale will be “significantly” positive for RSA’s capital, the company said in a statement Tuesday. The transaction isn’t conditional on the outcome of an offer from Zurich, which was aware of the sale plan before it announced a possible bid in August, RSA said.
“This is the largest remaining disposal we have under way and is consistent with our stated target to substantially complete RSA’s strategic refocus by the 2015 year-end results,” Chief Executive Officer Stephen Hester said in the statement.
RSA last month received a takeover proposal that would value the U.K. insurer at about 5.6 billion pounds. That would make it the biggest acquisition in the industry in Europe this year. RSA is still trading below Zurich’s tentative offer of 550 pence a share, signaling investors may be concerned about the deal closing at that price.
Zurich’s offer “can be increased at any time, or decreased in certain circumstances. And we can still walk away at any time,” Sylvia Gaeumann, a spokeswoman for Zurich, said in an e-mail. “We already have a strong footprint in Latin America.”
Suramericana is a unit of Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana, a Colombia financial-services firm.