Sanlam, Allianz to create new R33bn African joint venture

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Outside South Africa, Sanlam has operations in more than 30 African countries.
Outside South Africa, Sanlam has operations in more than 30 African countries.
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  • Sanlam and the German financial giant Allianz will merge their African operations outside of South Africa to create a new, R33-billion company. 
  • Sanlam will hold 60% of the new joint venture, with Allianz owning 40%
  • Allianz has 2 million insurance clients across Africa, and a strong presence in Egypt, Kenya, Cameroon and Uganda.

Sanlam and the German financial giant Allianz will merge their African operations outside of South Africa to create a new company with assets valued at R33 billion.

Outside of South Africa, Sanlam has life and general insurance, as well as investment management operations in more than 30 African countries, including Morocco, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Botswana, while Allianz's insurance portfolio spans 11 countries outside of South Africa.

Allianz, which has 126 million customers in more than 70 countries, first launched its African business in 1912, and has a strong presence in Egypt, Kenya, Cameroon and Uganda. The company's African insurance business has two million customers, with some 2 600 employees. 

Sanlam says it will benefit from a strategic partnership with one of the largest financial groups in the world, while the deal will also accelerate its expansion into "high priority" countries.

In addition, Sanlam believes the new joint venture will bring "knowledge sharing, economies of scale, a combined platform as well as potential synergies".

Sanlam will hold 60% of the new joint venture, with Allianz owning 40% - with the ability to increase its shareholding to a maximum of 49% over time. 

Sanlam will move all of its African assets – apart from South Africa, Continental Re and its Namibian subsidiaries - into the venture, in exchange for a 60% stake. This will include its 90% shareholding in SAN JV -  a special-purpose vehicle held jointly by Sanlam's wholly owned subsidiary, Sanlam Emerging Markets and Santam.

Allianz will contribute all its African assets to the new business.

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Santam announced on Wednesday that it agreed to sell its 10% shareholding in SAN JV to Allianz for around R2 billion. If that transaction is concluded, Allianz will also contribute its 10% shareholding in SAN JV to the new joint venture. 

Sanlam's operations in Namibia will be contributed to the joint venture at a later stage, and at a time when Allianz will also have the option to increase its shareholding in the new joint venture to 49%.

The combined net income of all the assets that will be included in the new venture was more than R420 million for the six months to end-June 2021. Sanlam's assets contributed R254 million in income. 

Regulatory approvals are still needed for the deal, which is expected to be concluded within the next 12 to 15 months. Sanlam and Allianz have agreed to remain invested in the joint venture for at least 10 years.

Sanlam's share price rose almost a percent to R65.04 on Wednesday.

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