CGNU has expanded its presence in Asia by buying the insurance arm of
Singapore-based bank DBS for £152m. The deal with DBS, the biggest
bank in South-east Asia, puts CGNU in league with Prudential's Asian
operations. CGNU will combine the DBS insurance arm with its existing
Singapore business and will sell through DBS branches. It is now applying
for licences in China and India.
Axa is dropping the Sun Life brand from the UK to bring the company in
line with its worldwide operations.
IFAs will see the Sun Life brand gradually disappear from Axa's product
range over the next six to nine months.
Axa says it has already taken steps to filter out the Sun Life brand by
selling Axa-branded Isas earlier this year. The group's stakeholder was
launched under the Axa brand. This product-by-product approach will be used
to phase out Sun Life as products are enhanced and updated.
Former Prudential retail marketing director Frank Wilson was recruited by
Axa in November as marketing director to oversee the change.
Sun Life has been the group's brand in the IFA channel since the takeover
in 1997. Axa believes that IFAs will be comfortable using Axa-only branded
Axa has been using its sponsorship of the FA Cup to push its brand in the
UK since 1998 and now believes the brand recognition is strong enough to
let it stand alone.
Axa spokesman Peter Webb says: “It is no secret that we have been moving
towards the Axa brand world wide, but this is gathering pace now in the UK
with the obvious sign being our sponsorship of the FA Cup.
“We started with Isas and stakeholder and this process will continue. Axa
is becoming a globally known brand. It is not a new name anymore and IFAs
know what we are about.”