Torchmark to buy pvt insurance company for about $218.5 mln

Wed Aug 1, 2012 9:00am EDT

* Deal to add to Torchmark's earnings in 2012, 2013

* Deal expected to close in early Q4

Aug 1 (Reuters) - Life and health insurer Torchmark Corp will buy privately held Family Heritage Life Insurance Co of America for about $218.5 million.

Torchmark said the deal will add about 1 to 3 cents per share to net operating earnings in 2012 and about 13 to 17 cents per share in 2013.

The deal, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter, will have minimal impact on Torchmark's free cash flow available for stock repurchases, the company said.

Cleveland, Ohio-based Family Heritage, which sells individual supplemental health insurance products, posted a net income of $21 million for 2011.

"Family Heritage offers protection-oriented insurance to middle income families through a captive agency force that we believe we can help grow," said Gary Coleman and Larry Hutchison, co-chief executives of Torchmark.

Shares of Torchmark, valued at about $4.77 billion, closed at $49.75 on Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange.

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