KBC Group to acquire NN’s Bulgarian pension insurance and life insurance businesses
11 February 2021
- KBC Group and the Netherlands-based NN Group reached agreement for DZI – Life Insurance, part of the Belgian banking and insurance group, to acquire all the shares of NN Pension Insurance company and all of the assets and liabilities of NN Insurance
- Closure of the deal is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to be finalised in the course of 2021
The acquisition of the pension and life insurance business of NN in Bulgaria enables KBC Group in Bulgaria, present in this country with UBB, DZI, UBB Interlease and its other subsidiaries, to broaden its extensive bank-insurance offering to customers with the addition of high-end pension fund products, while also providing additional cross-selling opportunities for banking and non-life insurance products in a one-stop shop approach.
The reached agreement will allow DZI to further increase its share of the life insurance market in Bulgaria through a range of traditional life insurance and unit linked insurance products, reaffirming its leading position on the market. Additionally, it will also strengthen the overall distribution power of KBC Group in Bulgaria thanks to NN network of 300 tied insurance agents in this country’s main cities.
NN Bulgaria has developed its pension and life insurance business since entering the market in 2001. It has 138 employees, and boasts a customer base of over 400,000 individuals and 400 corporate entities, and approximately 1 billion euros in AUM.
KBC Group has been present in the Bulgarian financial sector since 2007. In 2009, KBC redefined its strategy to include Bulgaria as one of its core markets. The acquisition will allow UBB and DZI to further increase cross-selling potential through their already well-established bank-insurance presence in the Bulgarian market, to serve more customers, and to benefit from economies of scale and increased visibility.
Johan Thijs, KBC Group CEO, commented as follows on the deal: “I am delighted with this acquisition in Bulgaria. We’ve become a strong player in this core market, distinguishing ourselves in our banking, insurance, asset management and leasing lines of business. Since our Group’s entry in Bulgaria in 2007 our commitment to the Bulgarian market has been firmly stated many times. Today we are taking a next step and adding pension insurance to our already wide-spread presence in Bulgaria. This means that we will be in a position to offer all types of high-end integrated bank-insurance products to our Bulgarian customers. We’re extremely happy to acquire a high-quality concern with an excellent reputation and management team, and we are looking forward to developing it in a responsible manner with our other Bulgarian entities, and so affirm our leading position on the Bulgarian financial market.”
Luc Popelier, CEO of KBC Group’s International Markets Business Unit added: “This deal further strengthens our already strong position in Bulgaria and is a fine example of our strategic approach to our core markets. We’re convinced that NN’s customers and KBC’s stakeholders will benefit from the amalgamation of our brands.”
Peter Andronov, country manager for KBC in Bulgaria commented: “This deal gives our over 1.8 million customers access to pension insurance and additional life insurance opportunities, in addition to our broad range of stable, secure and fully integrated financial solutions. Expanding our activities in Bulgaria, building on the competence and dynamism of UBB and DZI, and leveraging our joint product and service offering will help us to achieve our objectives, diversifying our income and ensure future success. I look forward to collaborating with our new staff and management and am convinced that, together, we will affirm our leading position for all our customers and other stakeholders.”
The deal is fully in line with the strategy of the KBC group, which focuses on retail customers, small and medium sized enterprises and midcaps in its core markets of Belgium, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria and Ireland.