Munich Re reportedly buys South Korean insurer

Business Materials 22 October 2007 06:22

Munich Re, the world's second-biggest reinsurer, will buy a 65 percent stake in the online insurance unit of South Korea's Daum Communications Corp. for about $120 million, a newspaper said on Monday.

The German reinsurance company will sign a final agreement this month with Internet portal Daum, LIG Non-life Insurance and other shareholders in Daum Direct, the Korea Economic Daily said, citing industry sources.

"Munich Re is understood to have wrapped up talks on the size of a stake and the price with Daum Direct shareholders," an unnamed industry source was quoted as saying.

The newspaper said the acquisition price would be about 110 billion won ($120 million).

Daum Communications owns a 50.1 percent stake in the online car insurance unit, and LIG holds 38.2 percent, with the remaining shares held by LIG affiliates and individual companies.

The country's top portal operator said it was checking on the report.

If a deal goes through, Munich Re will be the second foreign player to enter South Korea's auto insurance market.

Europe's No. 2 insurer AXA bought 75 percent of online auto insurance firm Kyobo Auto in March from unlisted Kyobo Life Insurance Co Ltd for an undisclosed sum. ( Reuters )