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Aquarian Agrees to Acquire Pavonia Life of New York: Deals

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What You Need to Know

  • Aquarian is the parent of Investors Heritage Life.
  • Bain Capital says most big insurance deals involve parts of companies.
  • Bain says the percentage of deals involving private equity is smaller than thought.

The New York-based investment company that acquired Investors Heritage Life Insurance Company in 2017 is hoping to buy a life insurer based in New York state.

Aquarian Holdings, has agreed to acquire Pavonia Life Insurance Company of New York from a wholly owned U.S. subsidiary of Enstar Group Limited.

Enstar Group is a Hamilton, Bermuda-based company that acquires insurers and reinsurers that are servicing in-force coverage but no longer selling new coverage.

Pavonia Life of New York was founded in 1971 as America Republic Insurance Company of New York. The company has had many names and many owners over the years.

When Enstar acquired the company, in 2013, Pavonia Life of New York was known as First Central National Life Insurance Company of New York, and it was part of an insurance subsidiary of HSBC Holdings PLC, a London-based banking giant.

Pavonia Life of New York has its official state of domicile in New York and is licensed to write coverage in New York state and in Delaware, according to Aquarian.

Terms of the purchase were not disclosed.

Aquarian says it must get approval from the New York State Department of Financial Services before completing transaction.

Aquarian already owns Investors Heritage, which is based in Frankfort, Kentucky, and has made a mark for itself by expanding in the life and annuity markets at a time when many other insurers have been contracting.

Two months ago, Investors Heritage was licensed to sell coverage in 46 states, according to the announcement the company put out when it launched its new Canopy Preneed funeral, burial and cremation product line.

In other life, health and annuity market news:

Integrity Marketing Group and SeniorCare Benefits

Integrity Marketing Group LLC of Dallas, has acquired SeniorCare Benefits of Sunrise, Florida, for a price that was not disclosed.

Integrity Marketing is a private equity-owned insurance marketing organization that has been growing rapidly through acquisitions.

SeniorCare Benefits sells Medicare plans through 250 agents in contact centers.

Brent DePeppe, the CEO of SeniorCare Benefits,, will become a managing partner with Integrity Marketing, according to the firm.

Nationwide Refuels Venture Capital Fund

Nationwide said its venture capital investment fund now has a total value of $350 million, up from $100 million in 2017.

The Columbus, Ohio-based mutual insurer says it will continue to focus its investments on insurance technology and financial technology startups in six fields.

Four of the fields relate to property and casualty insurance, and a fifth involves “digital infrastructure,” or startups with an interest in insurance underwriting, data analytics and other products and services that make insurance machinery run.

The sixth field is “living in retirement,” including any products and services that “help consumers prepare for and live better in their next stage of life.”

Bain Sizes Up Insurance Deals

Analysts at Bain & Co. Inc. say the world’s insurers have been focusing more on selling unwanted operations in the past five years than on whole-company deals.

The Boston-based investment firm included the insurance mergers and acquisitions review in a new collection of M&A reports released Tuesday.

Only about 33% of the world insurance deals with a value over $1 billion that the analysts recorded in 2020 involved one company acquiring or merging with another whole company, the analysts found.

The other 67% of the 2020 deals, and about 70% of the big deals recorded since 2016, involved insurers disposing of non-core operations, the analysts write.

“Pressure on profit pools from low rates as well as increasingly complex capital requirements have forced them to take a more critical look at the ability of their business units to create sustainable value,” the analysts write.

Many insurers are buying more of the same kinds of operations they already have and value, the analysts write.

“Private equity firms,” or companies that buy stock in privately held companies, have been getting a great deal of attention as insurance business buyers.

Private equity investment accounted for a much bigger share of world insurance M&A deal volume in 2020 than in 2010, but it still accounted for just 14% of 2020 world insurance M&A deal volume, the analysts write.

“We expect private equity investors will continue to pursue capital-light businesses such as brokerages and tech providers as well as increase their appetite for runoff and core insurance businesses in which they can apply their investment expertise and their risk appetite, which generally is higher than more traditional player,” the analysts write.

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