AXA to Acquire XL Group: Creating #1 Global P&C Commercial Insurer

AXA announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire XL Group for $15.3B in cash.



This acquisition is aligned with AXA’s Ambition 2020 to allow the insurer to shift business to preferred lines with “high frequency customer contacts, quality service and superior technical expertise.”


“XL Group has the right geographical footprint, world-class teams with recognized expertise and is renowned for innovative client solutions. Our combined P&C Commercial lines operations, will have a strong position in the large and upper mid-market space, including in specialty lines and reinsurance, and will complement and further enhance AXA’s already strong presence in the SME segment. The two companies share a common culture around people, risk management and innovation, positioning AXA uniquely for the evolving future of the P&C industry” – AXA CEO, Thomas Buberl.


“Today marks an unrivaled opportunity to accelerate our strategy with a new strength and dimension. With every confidence in how we have positioned XL Group for the future, it is a substantial testament to AXA’s leadership and commitment to maintaining the XL Group brand and culture that we have come to an alignment. We are excited at the opportunity to build the scale, geographical footprint, product portfolio, and the unmatched commitment to innovation that relevance in the global insurance industry requires. In AXA we have found like-minded partners committed to the absolute necessity to innovate and move this industry forward” – XL Group CEO, Mike McGavick.


Refresher: XL Innovate – the $500M venture arm of XL Carlin – has invested in select insurance startups including Embroker, Lemonade and Stonestep. Meanwhile AXA operates AXA Strategic Ventures ($450M), and Kamet and has invested in Verifly, Limelight Health and PolicyGenius. Together, the two form an interesting force in the startup landscape, albeit with some overlap (think: Verifly/Slice).



For now, the market isn’t reacting favorably.


I wouldn’t be surprised if Allianz, the other best global brand in the world, according to Interbrand, and an investor in Lemonade, would now eye a Lemonade acquisition a bit more favorably. Because when one eyes specialty, the other could eye commodity (with a twist).


Recall insurance M&A here and download the slides here.