EU approves huge insurance company merger


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The EU, under the EU Merger Regulation, the acquisition of Willis Towers Watson (WTW) by Aon.

The approval is conditional on full compliance with a substantial set of commitments offered by Aon, including the divestment of central parts of WTW’s business to the international brokerage company Arthur J. Gallagher. The commitments will strengthen Gallagher in its capabilities in reinsurance and commercial risk brokerage and improve its footprint in the European Economic Area. It will thus become a credible alternative to the combined entity post-transaction.

“European companies rely on brokers to obtain best possible solutions to manage their commercial risk. Aon and Willis Towers Watson are leading players in the insurance and reinsurance brokerage markets. The remedy package accepted by the Commission ensures that European companies, including insurance companies and large multinational customers, will continue to have a good choice and good services when selecting a broker suitable for their needs,” said Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, on July 9.

Today’s decision follows an in-depth investigation into the effects of the proposed transaction, combining the activities of Aon and WTW. Both companies are global leading players in the markets for commercial risk brokerage services, reinsurance brokerage and the provision of retirement, health & welfare and investment services to commercial customers.

There are currently four on-going Phase II merger investigations: the proposed merger of Cargotec and Konecranes, the proposed acquisition of Air Europa by IAG, the proposed acquisition of Trimo by Kingspan Group and the proposed acquisition of Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering by Hyundai Heavy Industries.

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Deirdre Tynan

Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.