September 26, 2017 / 7:07 PM / in 10 months

Munich Re's Ergo considers sale of run-off life portfolios

FRANKFURT, Sept 26 (Reuters) - German reinsurer Munich Re’s Ergo unit is considering options for its insurance units Victoria Leben and Ergo Leben, which have ceased underwriting new business, it said on Tuesday.

“We are seeking detailed information on how large the interest (in these assets) is and if we can achieve a viable solution as well as an attractive price,” an Ergo spokesman said.

He added that no decision had been taken if or at which price Ergo would sell the so-called run-off life portfolios.

Willis Towers Watson has been mandated as a sellside advisor for the life insurers, two people familiar with the matter said.

Ergo’s run-off life portfolio has 6 million customers and assets of 56 billion euros ($66 billion).

Ergo and fellow insurers are struggling to pay guaranteed returns to clients because of record-low interest rates. Combined with more stringent European capital rules, these have prompted some to offload life insurance operations.

Financial services groups specialising in the run-off of life insurance are vying for these portfolios. They acquire policies until their expiry and aim to turn a profit by measures such as cutting administrative costs. ($1 = 0.8478 euros) (Reporting by Arno Schuetze and Alexander Hübner; Editing by Georgina Prodhan)

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