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Skandia fears SA exposure


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Old 24-09-2005, 08:48 AM   #1
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Skandia fears SA exposure

Stockholm - Despite its recommendation to shareholders to reject Old Mutual's takeover bid on Friday, Skandia's board said that it wouldn't seek alternative bidders or "take any action to frustrate" Old Mutual's offer.

http://www.finance24.com/articles/sh...518-24_1805405
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Old 23-12-2005, 09:15 AM   #2
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Exclamation But , by now : it's all over , but the shouting (it seems )!

The "offer" was due to close on 16. December 2005 ;
according to some reports , about 62,5% of shareholders have now idicated that they would , indeed , accept Old Mutual's offer price i.e. dispose of their Skandia stock holdings , to O.M.I. ; thus , the takeover could be summarised as a "fait accompli" , but : in response , O.M.I. have announced another extension , into January , so that the remaining shareholders may reconsider still.
What might this result in , one can only speculate !
"Historia , magistra vitae est" , so :
In the early to mid Nineties , O.M.I. became one of leading players in the offshore pensions and investments market worldwide , from their Guernsey , Hong Kong , Dubai and other main offices ; they bought up AXA offshore ,
( and took those products off the market next ) and were proactively , inspiredly and aggressively pursuing market share , exclusively through brokers ( some wholly-owned , like e.g. Finexco , but much more successfully through independent ones , like Colingwood , Mondial , P.I.C. , Young and Ridgeway and others ) . Colingwood especially had a strong Far East presence , so : O.M.I. bought them up , too - only to later find out that the price paid was too high , and to get some of it back , reportedly .
Both Colingwood and Finexco ceased to exist not that much later , subsequently , but O.M.I.'s products : savings/investments' plans , portfolio bonds , lump-sum life-assurance policies etc. were "sold" and , more importantly : multi-serviced after the sales , by many independent financial advisers , in Latin America , Middle East , Far East and Europe .
All was going so well that , in spring/summer of 2000 ( I seem to remember , bona fidae , but am open to correction ) , O.M.I. unilaterally announced that it was severing ties with all its brokers and that existing customers would , as of 30.August that year , have to deal with O.M.I. ( Guernsey ) direct ; also , the brokers would not anymore be allowed to represent O.M.I. at all. Some of the brokers were , for years before this , treating O.M.I. as their preferred and most-recommended product .
Now , back to 2005 and to the fact that Skandia's specialist life-assurance and investment products , as distributed on behalf of Skandia's branches in Dublin , Ireland and Royal Skandia ( Isle of Man ) , by independent brokers , are amongst most favoured , in Europe , Middle East , Hong Kong etc...
What will happen ? Is the history going to be repeated , so that those products will be taken off the market , too ?
( The official versions have it , that O.M.I. is particularly keen to get control of Skandia's U.K. business , rather than "offshore"...)
The demise of Skandia Ireland and Royal Skandia I.o.M. would leave the other main competitors ( Generali Int' l , Friends Provident , Zuerich , Hansard etc. )
well happier ...
Watch this space...
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Old 23-12-2005, 02:33 PM   #3
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Ray

When I started in the industry some 9 years ago, it was predicted that their would only be about 5 life insurance/investment companies left in the end. With many having closed and more mergers and acquisitions on the way, this is turning out to be true. Looks like OMI intends being a part of this.
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Old 23-12-2005, 05:10 PM   #4
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I forgot to mention :

in the 90's , O.M.I.were astute , "with-it" and comitted to progress and excellent service , like...which we all , no doubt , witnessed !
But nowadays , I get bombarded with complaints from the Clients I have introduced to O.M.I.'s products , with whom I'm not actually even allowed by "mighty O.M.I." to communicate on this basis - whereas :
a ) since cca 2000 , the IFA's were not permitted to "service" the Clients' O.M.I. Accounts anymore ,
b ) and yet : O.M.I. ( Guernsey ) now refuses outright , of lately , to profer any investment advice whatsoever , even to the smallest of savers - and refers the same Clients to ANY other "professional financ. advisers" ( which , by implication , does also include myself and my firm , yet again ! AND where the such , new , advice might be obtainable , strictly : for an extra fee , presumably ? ).
I hear clearly what you say about "consolidation" , but :
Jeez , mate , what a sad , sad , sad way to go about it !
( wonder , what's gonna be the case with tens and hundreds of thousands of Skandia's clients , if/when they find out ...? )
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Old 06-01-2006, 04:01 PM   #5
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The new "Closing Day " now , on this hostile takeover

is 12. January , or so the OMI website claims ;
let's see , what gets announced next ?
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Old 17-01-2006, 07:30 AM   #6
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And now ?

So , O.M.I. have now ( much to my surprise and despite multi extensions of the offer ) only received 68,8 % approval , from Skandia's shareholders ;
and they announced yet another extension ; in the game of nerves , even if they get up to 75% , this will still be insufficient to de-list from the Stockholm Stock Exchange , where their shares are likely to remain volatile.
While this action is slowly unwinding , as a result of all kinds of publicity about the hostile take-over and the Swedish pension-funds opposition to it , the take-up of new business has now dropped drastically for Skandia in the past few months - or should I re-phrase : hardly any new business is directed that way , the potential Clients having all sorts of reservations about how Old Mutual might further proceed , in the circumstances unknown ; Royal Skandia (Isle of Man ) was a well-established , much-accomplished offshore provider , whereas the ( more recent ) Skandia Ireland was just progressing nicely , in EU-compliant Life business - and , what a timing for all this to happen , exactly as the Life Wrappers have been made so much more attractive , after the European Directive on Tax on Interest...now , the competition really must be smiling !
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Old 17-01-2006, 08:45 AM   #7
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It certainly does seem to be dragging on somewhat, but I am not so sure I share the same reservations that you do about OMI. Time will tell
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Old 17-01-2006, 09:49 AM   #8
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Nothing like personal experience

Quite besides the fact that they closed down AXA in the Isle of Man soon after similar takeover , and also Collingwood and Finexco brokerages which they had similarly bought :
P.I.C. the firm , in Asia , Africa , Middle East and Europe - and I especially : used to put a lot of good business their way , for years - until , out of the blue , they simply announced that all us , brokers , were not required anymore ;
then they went one further , by writing to all the Clients ( which WE had sourced and sold to and closed i.e. secured , GOT for O.M.I. ), advising them not to deal with us anymore...which raised a few eye-brows all-around , for sure ! Ethics ? What ethics ?
Can't imagine you'd like something like this to happen in your business ?
In all my 10 years in offshore and life assurance , haven't yet encountered another company , with such track record...
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Old 18-01-2006, 12:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray
Quite besides the fact that they closed down AXA in the Isle of Man soon after similar takeover , and also Collingwood and Finexco brokerages which they had similarly bought :
P.I.C. the firm , in Asia , Africa , Middle East and Europe - and I especially : used to put a lot of good business their way , for years - until , out of the blue , they simply announced that all us , brokers , were not required anymore ;
then they went one further , by writing to all the Clients ( which WE had sourced and sold to and closed i.e. secured , GOT for O.M.I. ), advising them not to deal with us anymore...which raised a few eye-brows all-around , for sure ! Ethics ? What ethics ?
Can't imagine you'd like something like this to happen in your business ?
In all my 10 years in offshore and life assurance , haven't yet encountered another company , with such track record...
Yep, another life company with a poor sense of ethics. I was referring to the business judgement only. Sadly, I have found that very few, if any, of these investment houses/life assurers have any sense of morals/ethics.
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Old 18-01-2006, 02:10 PM   #10
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Amongst our team , we call them all " tarts " ...

...as that's how they act , everytime they come and flirt and befriend you , i.e. when they want new biz out of you ;
but , never be surprised if , soon thereafter ,
they've dropped you into the worst sh..,
at a proverbial "drop of the hat ", for any reason whatsoever ,
genuine or not...;
that goes for Scottish Provident too ,
and Scottish Mutual ,
and Scottish Life ,
and Scottish Widows ,
and Lloyd's Bank ,
and Sun Life ,
and Eagle Star ,
Royal Sun Alliance ,
Clerical Medical...
...the over-long list can and does get : far too depressing , mate !
So , one always must remain loyal and supportive of the ones , who have not ( as of yet ) deserted us , nicht wahr ?!
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