Aviva Newsroom - 8 June 2007

Aviva receives regulatory approval for joint venture in Malaysia

8 June 2007

Aviva plc ("Aviva"), the international savings, investments and insurance group, announces that it is entering the Malaysian long-term savings market through a joint venture with the CIMB Group, listed on Bursa Malaysia as Bumiputra-Commerce Holdings Berhad ("BCHB").

Under the agreement, Aviva will acquire a 49% equity interest in two of CIMB Group's subsidiaries, Commerce Life Assurance Berhad ("Commerce Life") and Commerce Takaful Berhad ("Commerce Takaful"), for a total cash consideration of £74 million (RM500 million).¹ The terms of the joint venture agreement have been approved [today] by Bank Negara, Malaysia's financial services regulator.

In addition, Commerce Life and Commerce Takaful will enter into exclusive bancassurance agreements with CIMB Group's subsidiary, CIMB Bank, for the distribution of life and takaful insurance products through the bank's 383 branches. CIMB Bank has the largest branch network in Malaysia, with over 4.5 million customers. As well as offering products through CIMB Bank, Commerce Life and Commerce Takaful will also explore other distribution channels in Malaysia.

Philip Scott, executive director of Aviva, said: "We're excited about our entry into the Malaysian market, which is the eighth largest insurance market in Asia. The high savings rate in Malaysia - 37% of gross national product - combined with the life market's growth prospects make this a significant move in the expansion of our Asia Pacific portfolio.

"The CIMB Group is a major player in Malaysian financial services and we are delighted to have forged this joint venture partnership which will give us access to an extensive customer base in Malaysia."

Formal signing of agreements and completion are expected to follow within the next two weeks.

¹Calculated using exchange rate £1.00 = RM6.72

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