Shareholders of both American International Group and SunAmerica have approved the deal that joins them.

The deal, valued at $13 billion to $14 billion, is expected to close by early 1999, AIG said.

The addition of SunAmerica would give AIG, the leading U.S.-based international insurance organization, a leg up in variable annuities sales through banks.

In the third quarter, SunAmerica sold $78 million of variable annuities through banks, placing it seventh on the list compiled by Kenneth Kehrer Associates, Princeton, N.J.

"Now that we have SunAmerica, we're going from being a niche player to being a global player" in variable annuities, said Gerald Wyndorf, president of AIG Life Cos., in a recent interview.

In addition to annuities and other retirement savings and investment products, SunAmerica has six wholly owned broker-dealers, a trust company, and a premium finance company.

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