Allianz has agreed to snatch up a Nigerian insurer in a move that gives it a greater foothold in Africa.

The German insurance giant said it has signed a binding agreement to buy 98 percent of Nigerian insurer Ensure Insurance Plc. from its core shareholder Greenoaks Global Holdings Ltd.

Neither side is disclosing financial terms. The transaction is expected to close at the end of 2017, after which Ensure will become a member of Allianz Group.

What Allianz is getting in the deal: Ensure provides life and non-life insurance services and booked more than $13 million in gross premiums written for 2016.

Allianz said in its deal announcement that it sees Africa as a major future growth market. With the acquisition, it will be doing business in 17 countries across the continent. Nigeria is a particularly strategic country in which to do business, however, as it is fast-growing, with a population of more than 180 million citizens. It also has the continent’s largest GDP.

Coenraad Vrolijk, regional CEO Africa for Allianz SE, said in prepared remarks that Nigeria is one of Africa’s most dynamic economies and that full access to its market “marks a major milestone for Allianz’s long-term growth strategy on the continent.”

He said expansion in Africa also involves “particular emphasis on hiring and developing local talent.”

Source: Allianz