Phoenix plans to raise about 1 billion pounds ($1.4 billion) of capital to help pay for the deal, which could be announced as early as this week, the people said, asking not to be identified as the discussions are private. No final agreement has been reached and the talks could still fall apart, the people said.
Representatives for both firms declined to comment.
The mooted deal comes after Lloyds Banking Group PLC and Standard Life ended talks over merging their insurance businesses after they disagreed over control of the combined entity, a person with knowledge of the matter said at the time.
Phoenix bought Deutsche Bank AG’s Abbey Life Assurance Co. and AXA SA’s U.K. pension and protection business in 2016 as it seeks to grow through deals.
Phoenix is a Jersey, Channel Islands-based consolidator of closed-life insurance businesses.
— Read 5 Things Blackstone Says About Feeding the Annuity Issuers on ThinkAdvisor.