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Munich Re Interested in Expanding in U.S. through Acquisitions, Cites German Paper

Source: RTT News

Posted on 31 May 2011

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German reinsurer Munich Re could be seeking more acquisitions in the U.S., according to the Financial Times Deutschland on Monday, which cited comments by management board member and CEO Torsten Jeworrek. The report has not named any specific acquisition targets.

Jeworrek reportedly noted that Munich Re is disproportionately represented in the U.S. He also added that he sees great potential also in Asian and Latin America.

Munich Re had acquired American specialty insurance provider Midland Co. for $1.3 billion in April 2008, and it acquired Hartford Steam Boiler and Inspection Co., a subsidiary of HSB Group, Inc., in April 2009.

Earlier in the month, Munich Re posted a quarterly loss of 948 million euros, due to heavy claims burdens from the devastating March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Despite this smaller-than-expected quarterly loss, Munich Re still expects to record a profit for the current financial year.

The company noted that the earthquake in Japan and the natural catastrophes in Australia and New Zealand have made this the most difficult start to a financial year we have experienced for a long time.

Claims costs for natural catastrophes totaled about 2.7 billion euros, after retrocession and before tax. Based on an initial loss estimate, 1.5 billion euros of this is attributable to the earthquake in Japan alone, and 1.1 billion euros from the severe natural hazard events in Australia and New Zealand.