ALBANIA: New attempt for INSIG's privatization

27 January 2016 — Daniela GHETU
The Albanian government is making a new attempt to privatize INSIG, offering the whole state owned package of shares for EUR 15.3 million. There were several other tenders opened in the past with the same purpose, the highest being placed in 2009 by American Reserve life Insurance, amounting to EUR 25 million for 61% of the share capital. At the time the sale failed because of the financial crisis.

According to the local financial press, INSIG's sale was confirmed by the Ministry of Finance through a letter sent to the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which provide details of the sale of the company. The document mentions "BDO International" as assessor for the company's value, while full tender specifications will be published on the official website of the ministry. The privatization process is overseen by the Department of Public Property in the Ministry of Finance and will close 45 days from the announcement of the tender.

INSIG was a state monopoly until 2000, since when the Albanian government have tried several times to sell it. Throughout this period the best deal was close to completion in 2009, when American Reserve Life Insurance has tendered EUR 25 million for a 61% stake of the company. At the time, the deal failed because the financial crisis prevented the buyer from paying the settled amount. Other privatization attemps followed with no satisfactory result.

According to the 2015 results published by the Albanian supervisory authority, INSIG ranks 7th on the non-life insurance segment, with an 5.84% market share and 3rd on the life insurance segment, with a 8.4% share of the total life GWP. The company's business on the life segment decreased in 2015 by almost 29%, to EUR 0.6 million, while on the non-life side INSIG saw an about 16% increase in GWP, to EUR 5.54 million.

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