Old Mutual to return £1bn after selling Nordic firm

Old Mutual is to return £1bn to its shareholders following the sale of its Nordic business to Skandia.

In December, the group said it wanted to sell its long-term savings and banking operations in Sweden, Demark and Norway to Skandia for £2.1bn.

It intends to return £1bn of net proceeds from the sale to ordinary shareholders via a special dividend, equivalent to 18p per ordinary share. It said £1.1bn of net proceeds will go towards paying off the group’s debts, which will allow it to meet its debt reduction target of £1.5bn by the end of this year.

A general meeting has been convened for March 14, where ordinary shareholders will be invited to approve both the sale and the £1bn special dividend.

Yellowtail Financial Planning managing director Dennis Hall says: “The sale distances Old Mutual from the distribution chain a bit more, allowing it to concentrate on what it is better at – fund management.”