Last Updated on July 29, 2020

MUA Ltd acquires Saham for Sh1.2 billion

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Mauritian insurance company MUA Ltd has acquired Nairobi based Saham Assurance company in a deal worth around Sh1.23 billion

MUA confirmed that the acquisition of Saham was finalised on Monday after it got all the necessary approval needed. The acquisition process began with the January’s signing of the Sales Purchase Agreement (SPA). After the SPA signing,  approvals from the Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA, Kenya), the COMESA Competition Commission and the South African Reserve Bank as well as the Competition Authority of Kenya was needed.

The January SPA had attracted regulatory caution after the firm reportedly announced the deal before notifying IRA. Its bosses were summoned after the regulator termed the announcement immature.

The move is the second of such acquisition by the Mauritian firm as it had previously acquired Phoenix Transafrica Holdings.

Saham Kenya currently has a market share of 1.54 per cent with Sh1.62 billion in premiums. The company is expected to combine with the MUA insurance in Kenya to boost market presence to about three percent.

Related: Safaricom Reveals its Stake in New M-Pesa Firm

The merged entity will be headed by Saham Kenya, Chief Executive Officer of Lydia Kibaara. Meanwhile the current CEO of MUA Kenya, Ashraf Musbally, will continue to oversee the business.

MUA’s interest in the Kenyan Market

MUA’s interest into the Kenyan market was first revealed during President Uhuru Kenyata’s visit to Mauritius last year when the firm announced plans to boost its Kenyan investment by $30 million (Sh3 billion), through the acquisition of a local insurer.

MUA entered the Kenyan market through a Sh2.2 billion acquisition of Phoenix Trans Africa Holdings with operations in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda under Phoenix East Africa Limited.

Saham was bought by Pan-African insurance group Sanlam Pan Africa Sanlam in 2018. However, the business was not merged with the multinational’s other subsidiary in the country (Sanlam Kenya). This meant they held two separate licenses. Following pressure from the regulator to merge the licences, Sanlam offered to sell off Saham.

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