5/2/2008

Turkish Yapi Kredi Insurance sale launched

Reuters - The sale of Turkish Yapi Kredi Bank's insurance business was launched this week in a teaser document sent out to possible buyers, sources familiar with the situation said on Thursday. Yapi Kredi Sigorta (Insurance), majority owned by Yapi Kredi Bank, has a market value of $814 million, according to Reuters data. It also owns a pensions company. "They started it this week ... they are selling a significant majority of non-life and a majority of life and pension," a source close to the deal told Reuters. Turkey's fast-growing and fragmented insurance sector has seen a wave of foreign acquisitions in the last couple of years, and foreign firms already here include France's AXA, Britain's Aviva and Spain's Mapfre. The European Union candidate's fast-growing population, high average economic growth rates and low penetration in the insurance sector account for its appeal to investors. The sector's premiums grew 14 percent last year, according to data from industry body TSRSB, well ahead of Turkey's overall economic growth of 4.5 percent.