Belgian insurer Ageas has ended its pursuit for Direct Line Insurance Group, following the rejection of two previous buyout proposals. 

Ageas initially made a £3.1bn buyout bid for Direct Line in January 2024, which was turned down by the UK insurer for significantly undervaluing the company.  

The offer comprised 100p in cash and one new Ageas share for every 25.24047 Direct Line shares. 

In March, Ageas increased its bid to £3.17bn, offering 120p in cash and one new Ageas share for every 28.41107 Direct Line Group shares, equating to 233p per Direct Line share.  

Direct Line dismissed this second proposal too, calling it “highly opportunistic” and “unattractive”. 

Throughout the negotiation process, Ageas said it sought to engage with Direct Line’s Board but was unable to identify further elements from publicly available information that would warrant a substantial revision of the offer terms. 

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

Ageas noted that it remains confident in the potential of the UK personal lines sector and the role of Ageas UK in the market. 

Now, Ageas UK will continue to focus on personal lines insurance, working closely with its distribution partners. 

Ageas CEO Hans De Cuyper said: “We had hoped to reach agreement on a jointly recommended firm offer together with the Direct Line Board. However, I am convinced that given the circumstances we took the right decision not to make an offer, staying true to who we are and what we stand for in terms of maintaining a friendly approach and respecting our financial discipline.” 

In related news, French banking giant BNP Paribas is reportedly interested in purchasing Fosun International’s stake in Ageas.  

The deal would involve Fosun’s nearly 10% stake in Ageas, which had a market value of around €750m as of 14 March, including stocks and derivatives.