Thursday, April 5, 2018

"Swiss Re forecasts reinsurance growth, says SoftBank limited to 10%"

Inside baseball:
The AI-for-reinsurance angle was one of the reasons Berkshire bought all that IBM.
Then Buffett realized Gen Re could have access to Watson without the shareholdings and since the stock was dropping faster than the dividends were coming in Ajit Jain would just have to get by with being a customer rather than an owner.

From Artemis:
Reinsurance firm Swiss Re said this morning that it anticipates that reinsurance premiums will grow at a rate of 5% per-annum over the next five years at least, providing it with plenty of opportunity to put its strategy to work, but despite that opportunity a deal with a major investor remains under discussion.

In the same announcement the reinsurer also revealed that while its discussions with Japanese tech giant SoftBank Group are ongoing, the negotiations are over an investment stake with a maximum size of 10%.

Swiss Re is at the heart of the merger and acquisition rumour-mill these days, after it was revealed that the reinsurance giant is in early stage talks with Japanese tech giant SoftBank about the investor taking a stake in the reinsurer.

That stake had been mooted as focused on as much as 25% of Swiss Re’s share capital, but this morning the reinsurer said that the investment stake was seen at a maximum of 10% of the company, as our sister publication Reinsurance News reported earlier.

Swiss Re did say that the ongoing discussions with SoftBank do revolve around more than just a pure investment stake in the reinsurance firm, with other areas of “strategic cooperation” also under consideration.
CEO Christian Mumenthaler spelled out what is particularly attractive about having a firm like SoftBank as an anchor investor, saying this morning that the idea of partnering with a tech-driven giant that has full access to markets such as Asia and a growing client base of around 800 million people through its business is particularly attractive.

Swiss Re is itself driving in a more tech-driven direction, but the transformation that could be possible by integrating its risk capital and risk analysis with SoftBank’s tech-driven distribution capabilities to a massive client-base would be particularly compelling....MUCH MORE