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A South African private equity firm has acquired the Kenyan unit of global insurance broker Aon for an undisclosed amount.

 

Johannesburg-based Capitalworks has bought out Aon interests in Aon Kenya, a firm which offers insurance brokerage services as well as human resource consulting.

 

The buyout was part of an acquisition spanning 10 Aon units in Africa including Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Angola, Lesotho, Namibia, Swaziland, and Zambia.

 

Aon said the deal would have “no direct impact on the operations of the business and it is simply a change of ownership.”

 

“The owners who are selling their stake in Aon Kenya are Aon. The financial value of the transaction is not disclosed,” a spokesman at Aon Plc told the Business Daily.

 

 

GREAT OPPORTUNITIES

 

Joe Onsando will continue to serve as CEO of Aon sub-Saharan Africa, the global firm said.

 

“The African continent presents great opportunities for growth and this transaction affirms a positive investment outlook for Africa driven by sound long-term fundamentals,” Mr Onsando said.

 

The Kenyan underwriting broker will now become an exclusive agent to the London-based Aon, an arrangement that will be replicated across Capitalworks’ network in Africa.

 

Capitalworks manages a portfolio of $515 million (Sh53.3 billion) and is banking on the buyout to tap into the growing insurance brokerage market in Kenya and across the continent.

 

“We will be working with management to build on the Aon heritage as a trusted partner to clients in protecting the future of their people and assets in Africa,” said Garth Willis, principal at Capitalworks. “We are excited about investing in a world-class operation with a market-leading position in Africa,’’ he added in a statement. Other owners of Aon Kenya include the Industrial and Commercial Development Corporation and a State-controlled investment fund which has a 46.65 per cent stake.

 

Funguo Investments has an eight per cent stake in Aon Kenya. Funguo is owned 26.73 per cent by ICDC.

 

Listed firm Centum disposed of its 21.5 per cent stake in the insurance broker to the other shareholders and booked a gain of Sh1 billion, the company disclosed last year.

 

“We maintain a positive outlook for sub-Saharan Africa as an exciting operating environment and our pan-African strategy is focused on supporting our colleagues and collaborating closely with local leaders and partners,” said John Cullen, chief executive at Aon Risk Solutions in charge of Europe, Middle East and Africa.

 

Some of the lucrative deals won by Aon Kenya in the recent past include a Sh5.6 billion a year health insurance scheme for public school teachers in a pact with their employer, the Teachers Service Commission.

 

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