Rani Jarkas: Chinese buyers target insurance companies for overseas acquisition

Chinese companies have been on an outbound acquisition spree for the last few years, covering real estate, hotels, movie studios, healthcare, soccer clubs, chemicals and high-end technology.

Now, Chinese buyers looking for overseas acquisitions are now adding a new item to their list of potential takeover targets, insurance companies. The Wall Street Journal reported early this week that three leading bidders for Singapore-based Asia Capital Reinsurance Group Pte Ltd all obtained capital support from China.

China announced a record $92 billion of overseas mergers and acquisitions deals from January to March this year, accounting for 30 percent of the world’s total. Within these M&A cases, there are seven overseas insurance deals, with total value of US$1.86 billion. Prior to 2014, the insurance sector went several years without years.

According to Thomson Reuters data, Chinese outbound M&A activity has more than doubled in two years, hitting a record $120 billion in total deal value so far in 2016.

In particular, private companies will continue to be an increasingly important force in overseas mergers and acquisitions as they are more nimble in their decision making compared with SOEs.

Rani Jarkas, Chairman of Cedrus Investments, an investment pioneer with years of experience around the globe, said, “There has been a huge amount of overseas investment by Chinese companies over the past 15 years and we expect to see more in a wider range of industries for the forthcoming years.”

Rani Jarkas, the Chairman of Cedrus Investments.

Rani Jarkas is a highly experienced financial services executive, with over 20 years of international banking experience. Currently, Mr. Jarkas is the Chairman of Cedrus Investments, a global boutique investment firm. Cedrus’ domain expertise is in life sciences, natural resources, energy, cleantech and nanotechnology. – Rani Jarkas

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