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Blackstone, Swiss Re Join Bid for ING Asian Assets

NEW YORK--Blackstone Group L.P. (BX) and Swiss Re AG (SREN.VX) are joining former AIA Group Ltd. (1299.HK) Chief Executive Mark Wilson in bidding for ING Groep NV's (ING, INGA.AE) Asian life-insurance arm, a person familiar with the situation told Dow Jones Newswires Wednesday. Blackstone is, so far, the only private-equity firm participating in the auction that could potentially raise $7 billion for the Dutch bank. MetLife Inc. (MET) of the U.S., Canada's Manulife Financial Corp. (MFC, 0945.HK), American International Group Inc.'s (AIG) Asian life insurer AIA Group Ltd. (AAGIY, 1299.HK) previously led by Mr. Wilson and Korea Life Insurance Co. (088350.SE) are all in the race for the ING Asian assets, the Wall Street Journal reported in May, citing people familiar with the matter. Also bidding for the assets is Hong Kong tycoon Richard Li. Mr. Li bought AIG's asset management firm in 2010 and has since renamed it PineBridge Investments. The composition of the Blackstone consortium is also notable as Mr. Wilson has been eager to re-enter the insurance business since parting with AIA in 2010. Despite a failed attempt for AIG to sell its Asian assets to Prudential PLC (PRU.LN), the insurer has installed Prudential's former chief executive Mark Tucker as chief executive. AIG still owns about 19% of AIA. Mr. Wilson was reported last year by the Financial Times to be raising funds to bid for British insurer Aviva PLC's (AV.LN) non-core emerging markets. Aviva said earlier this month it plans to exit a third of its units to boost its capital buffer. It has also hired two investment banks to conduct a strategic review and may consider breaking up the firm to boost value. -Write to Amy Or at amy.or@dowjones.com

Stock News for Ing (ING)
DateTimeHeadline
02/08/201606:07:46Report of Foreign Issuer (6-k)
02/04/201604:29:00ING's Profit Beats Expectations -- Update
02/04/201602:20:00ING's Profit Beats Expectations
02/04/201602:08:00ING's Posts Better-Than-Expected Fourth-Quarter Results
01/28/201615:50:30Statement of Ownership (sc 13g)
01/28/201612:09:09Report of Foreign Issuer (6-k)
01/21/201608:56:50Report of Foreign Issuer (6-k)
01/13/201609:14:00China's Better-than-Expected Trade Numbers Raise Questions
01/13/201601:50:00Correction to China Exports Story
01/13/201600:30:00Chinese Exports Post Biggest Decline Since 2009
01/13/201600:20:00Chinese Exports Post Biggest Decline Since 2009
01/12/201606:07:12Report of Foreign Issuer (6-k)
01/06/201607:42:20Report of Foreign Issuer (6-k)
12/15/201516:01:00Monroe Capital Corporation Amends and Extends Credit Facility...
12/09/201511:41:34Form 13f Holdings Report (13f-hr/a)
11/30/201506:02:51Report of Foreign Issuer (6-k)
11/19/201502:28:00Dutch Life Insurer NN to Cut More Costs in Netherlands
11/10/201510:37:43Form 13f Holdings Report (13f-hr)
11/04/201509:39:00ING Profit Lifted as Bad Loans Fall --Update
11/04/201509:08:14Report of Foreign Issuer (6-k)

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