External growth : Allianz ready to shop for insurance firms

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    German insurer Allianz has set aside a billion euros (1.37 billion dollars) for future acquisitions but will take its time and shop carefully, chief executive Michael Diekmann said in an interview published on Monday.

    One of the world’s biggest insurers wants to wait until the effects of new European capital rules for insurance companies, known as Solvency II, have become clearer, Diekmann told the Financial Times. Allianz is looking meanwhile at property and casualty insurance companies that would help fund the development of its life insurance activities, he said.

    “What I would like to do is find cash-producing entities from the P&C side to fund growth on the life side,” Diekmann explained.

    “Life needs a lot of capital to fund growth and you need to have a balancing mechanism within the portfolio,” he added.

    Allianz has not made any major purchases in years, and in 2008 it sold its loss-making banking division Dresdner Bank to the second biggest German bank, Commerzbank.

    Frankfurt, Oct 4, 2010 (AFP)