TALLINN – SEB is to combine its Baltic life insurance businesses into one company in order to simplify the organization's operation model and improve the value proposition of life and pension insurance services and solutions.
In the three Baltic countries, SEB has three legal entities, SEB Life and Pension Insurance in Estonia, SEB Dzivibas Apdrosinasana in Latvia, and SEB Gyvybes Draudimas in Lithuania, as well as the Riga branch of a foreign company, Life and Pension Holding AB, which manages life and pension insurance responsibilities in the Baltics. In 2018, SEB will combine the three legal entities operating in the Baltic life insurance business into one company, the Riga branch of the foreign company Life and Pension Holding AB will be terminated, and the new company will be named SEB Life and Pension Baltic SE, SEB said.
The headquarters of the new company will be located in Riga, its branches in Estonia and Lithuania. It is expected that the consolidation process will be completed by early 2019. On July 13, SEB took the first steps to fill in the prerequisites of the legal merger process by submitting a draft of a merger agreement to the State Enterprise Register of Latvia and a notification to the Latvian Financial Supervisory Authority regarding the intention to open branches in Estonia and Lithuania. The Estonian and Lithuanian financial supervision authorities have been informed and the process of implementing the necessary cooperation has started.
"In view of the demographic and economic situation, the need of SEB's clients for life insurance and retirement benefits will continue to increase in the future. The merger of companies is a decision that allows, in the long run, offering our customers the best solutions in the three Baltic countries and for us to be an even better service provider," Indrek Holst, chairman of the management board of SEB Life and Pension Insurance, said.
"SEB has offered pension and life insurance solutions in Sweden, the Baltics, and 12 more countries all over the world for a long time. The needs of customers are not different across countries, they are rather similar, therefore, in a longer perspective, it is important how efficiently we are able to apply the knowledge, expertise and experience of different countries across borders. This can be done much more efficiently in the Baltic states within one company," Holst said.
“Having in mind demographic and economic situation there is a strong customer need for life insurance as well as pension savings solutions. SEB has long history in providing pension and risk solutions in the Sweden, Baltics and 12 other countries across Europe. We believe great potential in this area to help our customers for creating a better future. We continue to build on it, but with more focused and efficient activities cross Baltics. With new and one Baltic organization we will create a better platform how to approach customers more efficiently in all three countries as well as we will create better solutions and offers for our customers. This consolidation gives also a positive effect to our operational efficiency in order to be competitive as we see increased amount of regulations, which require additional investments," said Kristine Lomanovska, head of Latvia's SEB Dzivibas Apdrosinasana.
SEB is now starting legal procedure for the merger. The consolidation process will not have an impact on customer services, the banking group said.
SEB's Baltic life insurance companies offer a wide range of life insurance and savings solutions and have 198,000 customers. Baltic life insurance companies have a total market share of 27 percent and assets worth 542 million euros.