VANCOUVER, British Columbia - Aegon NV, the second second-largest Dutch insurer, is not interested in bidding for Aetna Inc.'s financial services and international operations so soon after its $10.8 billion acquisition of Transamerica Corp., the company's company's chief executive said.
"It's It's not very likely we''d do an enormous acquisition the size of Aetna after Transamerica," said Kees J. Storm, Aegon''s chairman and chief executive, in an interview.
Aegon was one of several insurers named in a Financial Times article, - along with American International Group Inc., Citigroup Inc., and Allianz AG, - as possible bidders for Aetna''s units.
The Dutch financial services giant ING Groep Group NV said it is still in talks to buy the Aetna units.
Mr. Storm said Aegon is satisfied with its 1999 acquisition of Transamerica, although it had planned to sell Transamerica Finance Corp., its corporate lending arm, by the end of the second quarter. In May,, Aegon said it was in talks with at least two companies to sell the unit, which analysts say could fetch as much as $2.5 billion.
The sale of Transamerica Finance "is still in process," Mr. Storm said. "We''ll have to say something about it in the second quarter results."
Mr. Storm said for nowthat Aegon is now concentrating on winning a license from Chinese regulators getting licensed to sell life insurance in China. Chinese regulators have promised to issue a license to Aegon through Transamerica, which applied for one in 1994., he said.
Aegon is competing with a number of other companies such companies as ING, AIG, and New York Life Insurance Co. for a chance to do business in China, whose population of more than 1.1 billion represents a largely untapped life insurance market.
Annual life insurance premiums in China are about $8 billion, but the market has the potential to grow by 25% to 50% percent a year once regulators allow it to become more developed, Mr. Storm said.