Fosun International is exploring the sale of its minority stake in Ageas, a Belgian insurer, reported Bloomberg, citing sources.  

The potential divestment could involve a partial or complete sale of Fosun’s 10% holding, valued at approximately €736m ($792m) based on the recent closing price, the sources said. 

While the deliberations are still in progress, the outcome remains uncertain, and neither Fosun nor Ageas have issued official comments on the matter, the media outlet reported. 

Fosun’s approach to the sale includes considering block trades or engaging with strategic buyers and financial investors.  

This move comes as the Chinese conglomerate, with interests in tourism, pharmaceuticals and finance, seeks to reduce assets and debt following a recent sell-off of bonds and stocks.  

Last month, Fosun offloaded a portion of its shares in Banco Comercial Português, raising €235m. 

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By GlobalData

Ageas, headquartered in Brussels, manages insurance operations that were once part of the financial services company Fortis, which was rescued during the 2008 financial crisis.  

The insurer provides a range of services, from property and casualty to life insurance. 

It has operations in Belgium, France, Portugal and the UK, and several Asian countries including China, Malaysia and Thailand.  

Fosun, which increased its stake to around 10% in 2021, is currently the largest single shareholder in Ageas. 

In September 2023, Ageas completed the sale of its French life insurance, savings and pension business to La Mutuelle Epargne Retraite Prévoyance Carac.  

The discussions for the disposal began in March 2023, leading to a sale agreement in April 2023.  

The disposal aligned with Ageas’ strategy to optimise its European portfolio and concentrate on key markets within the region.