Ager Bermuda Holding has disclosed that it is deconsolidating from Athene Holding. This follows the successful capital raise last year in April during which the company netted around 2.2 billion euros laying a foundation for European growth. This capital haul also marked an important step in Ager’s ambitions of turning itself into the premier life reinsurance partner and run-off consolidator in Europe.
However Athene will still have a minority stake in Ager alongside other global investors such as Apollo Global Management affiliates. Also Athene will be Ager’s preferred reinsurer with regards to its spread liabilities. Athene will also have board representation. Following the deconsolidation, the name of Ager will change to Athora Holding starting mid this month. The new look and the new name will be a reflection of the expanded capabilities of Ager as well as the new direction the firm will be taking.
“The new name and look reflects Ager’s expanded capabilities and the exciting direction the company is taking, conveying a highly efficient, constantly improving business with an analytical approach to success for all stakeholders,” said the company in a statement.
The deconsolidation comes slightly over four months since Athene bought the Irish unit of Dutch insurer Aegon at a price of 180 million euros. Aegon Ireland, which offers retirement planning and wealth management products to more than 25,000 clients in Germany and the United Kingdom, began its operations in Dublin close to 16 years ago.
By mid last year the value of the assets that Aegon Ireland held were worth around 5.2 billion euros. Aegon Ireland, which previously went by the name of Scottish Equitable, has a workforce of more than 200 employees in Ireland. The transaction is expected to be concluded by this year’s Q1.
Due to the fact that assets had been overvalued prior to the deal Aegon is expected to take a hit of approximately 125 million euros on the transaction.
Property reinsurance rates
The deconsolidation of Ager from Athene comes in the wake of property reinsurance prices globally rising at a lower rate than had been expected. This was attributed to strong competition which limited the level of increase after record losses were reported this year.
Hedge funds have acquired reinsurance stocks and new funds are being launched by catastrophe bond managers on the expectation of double-digit price increases after earthquakes in Mexico, wildfires in California and hurricanes in the Caribbean and the United States last year.