Winterthur Life has offered £300m for Colonial Life's UK business after
Countrywide Assured backed out of talks earlier this year.
Winterthur, the life insurance arm of Credit Suisse, was granted exclusive
bidding rights three weeks ago and has put in an offer for the UK arm of
the Australian insurer.
The deal will be put before Credit Suisse's board later this month but it
is expected it will go through without a hitch.
Winterthur claims it has a 40 per cent share of the Sipp market but its
overall life and pension market share is relatively small despite having
grown by 1,000 per cent in the UK over the last 10 years.
The Colonial deal is seen by Winterthur as a means to gain greater
exposure in the UK.
Colonial has around 380,000 policyholders and £4.6bn of assets under
management in the UK. It sells though a tied salesforce.