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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
10/31/201411:58:14ING Groep NV 3Q 2014 -- Forecast
10/27/201413:24:17Banks Lead the Way as Europe Stocks Sag -- 6th Update
10/27/201411:52:21Banks Lead the Way as Europe Stocks Sag -- 5th Update
10/26/201408:51:36NL banken slagen ruim voor Europese stresstest - update
10/26/201408:15:26Nederlandse banken ruim geslaagd voor Europese stresstest
09/03/201408:43:10ING Sells Part of Voya Financial Stake for $1.2 Billion
08/13/201412:26:02European Banks Ink Loan to Russian Steelmaker
08/06/201417:51:35ADR Shares End Mixed; ING Group Shares Trade Actively
08/04/201410:50:11ING Groep 2Q 2014 -- Forecast
06/13/201411:07:37Poland's May CPI Falls Unexpectedly
06/05/201415:01:13ING Moves Ahead With NN Unit IPO -- Update
06/05/201402:42:07ING Moves Ahead With NN Unit IPO
05/16/201404:20:08ING Groep Completes EUR1.125 Billion Note Issue
05/07/201417:32:03ADR Shares End Mixed; Delhaize, ING Shares Active
05/07/201409:07:17ING Hit By Restructuring Costs -- Update
05/07/201403:24:59ING Hit By Restructuring Costs
05/06/201417:18:57ING Groep 1Q Results -- Forecast
04/29/201404:03:13Dutch Central Bank Sets Out Capital Buffers
04/22/201402:58:35ING Bank Names Roel Louwhoff as Chief Operating Officer
04/02/201412:49:22European Stocks Notch Seventh Straight Day of Gains--Update

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