Morning Briefing: Anthem improves bid for Cigna, offer rejected

Morning Briefing: Anthem improves bid for Cigna, offer rejected | Insurance Business America

Morning Briefing: Anthem improves bid for Cigna, offer rejected
Anthem improves bid for Cigna, offer rejected
Relaxing with the family was put on hold for senior executives at some major insurance businesses over the weekend as takeover talks escalated. The Wall Street Journal reports that Anthem made public its $47.5 billion bid for Cigna in the hope of persuading shareholders; Cigna rejected the offer Sunday and said that the deal on offer of $184 in cash and stock per share was “inadequate” and not in shareholders’ best interests. There is also concern about who would run the combined firm and regulatory matters surrounding states with other insurers holding Blue Cross Blue Shield rights. Meanwhile Aetna has reportedly made a bid for Humana. Cigna is also a suitor for that firm, while UnitedHealth Group is said to be interested in Aetna.
 
Insurer recognized for employees’ well-being
Zurich North America has once again been recognized for its commitment to its employees’ wellbeing. The National Business Group on Health, a US-based non-profit said that Zurich has an “ongoing commitment to promoting a healthy work environment and encouraging employees to live healthier lifestyles.” Zurich’s multi-faceted wellness program includes an initiative that is central to mitigating health risks for employees through a comprehensive set of activities such as health assessments, biometric screenings, online coaching, fitness challenges and disease management programs. “Our wellness champions are a dynamic group of individuals who help us drive greater employee involvement throughout a dozen of our U.S. offices,” said Sarah Staggs, head of Benefits at Zurich North America. “They are a significant reason that a culture of wellness is alive and growing at Zurich.”
 
Shake-up for Chinese insurance industry
The insurance industry in China is to face new rules and regulations as the Beijing government plans to make the sector an integral part of the country’s welfare system. Life insurance products as we know them, with regular premiums and claims only paid on the death or long-term illness, are not prolific in China. Single deposits with a guaranteed pay-out are more frequently seen. However this is changing. The Financial Times says that 20 per cent of policies sold through banks must be traditional protection products and there is also a push for a larger private pension sector. New capital requirements are also being introduced as China moves towards a growing insurance industry run more on lines we are used to here.