Aviva agrees Â£5.6bn Friends Life takeover
Insurance giant Aviva, which employs more than 5,000 staff in Norwich, has agreed a £5.6bn takeover of Friends Life in a move to create the UK's biggest insurance and savings business.
The agreement follows an announcement last week that the two companies were in talks about a potential merger.
In a statement on the London Stock Exchange, the groups said a combined entity will have 16 million customers who would "stand to benefit from being part of a stronger and more diversified group".
The proposed acquisition values each Friends Life share at 370p. Meanwhile, holders of Friends Life shares will receive 0.74 sew Aviva shares for each Friends Life Share they hold.
Aviva chief executive Mark Wilson, who described the acquisition as "financially and strategically compelling", said: "It is one of those rare transactions where the two organisations fit with surgical precision, building on each other's strengths and addressing the challenges."
Andy Briggs, group chief executive of Friends Life, added: "The enlarged group brings together complementary strengths and a commitment to delivering the very best propositions, service and expertise for customers.
"Together we will have scale leadership positions across our chosen growth markets, ensuring that the new group is well placed to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the rapidly evolving UK life insurance market."