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Cigna Corp., Bloomfield, Conn. (NYSE: CI), and American Financial Group (NYSE: AFG) signed a definitive agreement whereby Cigna will acquire Great American Supplemental Benefits Group, one of the largest manufacturers, distributors and marketers of supplemental health insurance products in the U.S. The transaction is expected to close during the second half of 2012 following customary regulatory approval.

“Great American Supplemental Benefits is an ideal strategic fit with Cigna’s growth plans to expand our presence in the U.S. individual and seniors segments through a broad range of supplemental health solutions,” said Thomas Richards, president, Cigna Individual and Family Plans.

The combination provides Cigna with opportunities for additional growth by:

  • Expanding individual supplemental benefits offerings to Cigna customers in the U.S.;
  • Bringing a scaled offering to the seniors segment, with capabilities in Medicare supplement and other supplemental benefits;
  • Extending Cigna’s global direct-to-consumer retail channel; and
  • Further enhancing Cigna’s distribution network of agents and brokers.

“We are excited to have Great American’s talented team, led by their president, Brad Wolfram, join the Cigna organization,” Richards said. “Their product portfolio and distribution channels combined with Cigna’s next generation retail capabilities will further enhance our U.S. and international consumer services. We will work to create substantial value for our customers, shareholders, employees and other key stakeholders as we extend our health solutions and services across the individual and senior segments.”