Portugal’s Banco Espirito Santo has, reportedly, made a bid to buy Swiss private bank BSI, the private banking unit of Italian insurer Assicurazioni Generali.
The Portuguese lender has made the bid to Generali in the last few weeks. However the offer amount may be lower than Generali’s evaluation of BSI, which is around EUR2 billion (US$2.67 billion), Italian daily Il Sole 24 Ore reported.
Generali put BSI up for sale in June 2012, as part of its plan to exit non-strategic investments post a strategic review that resulted in the company focusing more on its core insurance activities in specific geographies, rebuilding its capital strength and cash flows, and increasing the weight given to its property and casualty activities.
Generali’s chief executive, Mario Greco, had said in January 2013 that the insurer hadn’t received any bidding offer for BSI yet. But in March, Spanish lender Bankinter and US investment fund Apollo Global Management also, reportedly, put in bids to buy BSI.
As part of its previous strategic review, the Italian insurer sold its minority stake in Mexico’s Seguros Banorte Generali and Pensiones Banorte Generali to Grupo Financiero Banorte, which already owned a majority stake in the firms, earlier in June.
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Generali also sold its US Life reinsurance business to reinsurance firm SCOR Global Life SE.