Friends Provident to acquire Bupa’s UK protection and risk business

Resolution has announced the proposed acquisition of Bupa Health Assurance (BHA) by one of its subsidiaries, Friends Provident Life and Pensions.

The sale, subject to regulatory approval, will see BHA become part of Friends Provident.

Bupa will now focus on its healthcare business, which includes its health insurance products, while BHA’s group life, critical illness, income protection and flexible benefits arrangements will strengthen Friends Provident’s group risk offering.

Friends Provident and Bupa have agreed to explore ways in which Friends Provident can introduce the Bupa private medical insurance product to its distribution channels and markets, while Bupa will do the same with Friends Provident’s insurance products.

Dr Natalie-Jane Macdonald, managing director, Bupa Health and Wellbeing, the parent company for BHA, said: “Our decision to sell is based on strategic fit. The sale will allow Bupa individual protection and Bupa group risk to benefit from belonging to a company with a strong focus on both protection and risk.

“Importantly, this decision also allows Bupa to concentrate on healthcare products and services."

BHA will run as a standalone business within the Friends Provident group for up to a year. BHA’s managing director, Steve Payne, will report directly to Trevor Matthews, chief executive officer of Friends Provident.

Matthews said: “This acquisition will strengthen our group risk product range and improve the profitability of our individual protection business. The BHA management team led by Steve Payne will bring additional highly valued expertise to the Friends Provident team.”

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