REFILE-UPDATE 1-Goldman Sachs cuts ownership in UK insurer

Tue Oct 22, 2013 11:33am EDT

LONDON Oct 22 (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs has sold most of its stake in Rothesay Life, a UK insurer founded and run by one of its former partners, freeing up capital to meet stricter regulatory requirements.

Singapore wealth fund GIC and private equity group Blackstone are buying 28.5 percent each while Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company will take 7 percent, Rothesay Life said on Tuesday.

Goldman Sachs will remain the largest shareholder with a 36 percent stake.

The parties did not disclose the terms of the deal, which is subject to regulatory clearance.

Rothesay Life, which insures pension liabilities, was established as a wholly owned subsidiary of Goldman Sachs in 2007, run by partner Addy Loudiadis who now holds the post of Chief Executive.

"Rothesay Life's success has now brought it to a size at which it is more capital-efficient for Goldman Sachs to share its ownership with other investors," said Goldman Sachs Vice Chairman Michael Sherwood.

Goldman sold 80 percent of another insurance business it owned, reinsurer Global Atlantic Financial Group, earlier this year because of the way new capital rules would treat its ownership of the business.

The sale boosted Goldman's Tier 1 common capital ratio under Basel 3 rules by half a percentage point, Chief Financial Officer Harvey Schwartz said last month.