New research from Conning has revealed that global merger and acquisition activity dipped over the last year.
The industry has been rife with M&A activity over the past several years but new research indicates that 2016 was “well below” activity levels of the previous year.
Alan Dobbins, a director in insurance research at Conning, said the research firm had identified 165 insurer transactions globally over the course of 2016, with a value of US$33bn.
“The year was marked by this retreat in activity, with many companies looking inward. While the property-casualty sector continued to have strong activity by its more offensive-minded competitors, the life sector pulled back significantly,” Dobbins said.
M&A activity still has an impact on the marketplace but 2016 was marked by a select number of non-life insurers playing both offense and defence in the M&A market, Steve Webersen, head of insurance research at Conning said.
Webersen noted that the insurance sector has been impacted by several key themes over the last 12 months.
Japanese pursuit of established and global underwriting platforms was highlighted as one theme, whilst serial acquirers continue to build out, as run-off acquisitions and specialty P&C businesses remain a target.
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