Bank of Queens­land ex­its in­sur­ance

Geelong Advertiser - - BUSINESS BEAT -

BANK of Queens­land has joined the ranks of lenders of­fload­ing life in­sur­ance af­ter agree­ing to sell its St An­drew’s unit for $65 mil­lion.

The re­gional lender yes­ter­day said the sale of St An­drew’s In­sur­ance to Free­dom In­sur­ance Group in­cluded a three-year dis­tri­bu­tion agree­ment for the pro­vi­sion of life in­sur­ance prod­ucts to BOQ cus­tomers.

BOQ, which lifted first- half profit 4 per cent, ex­pects the deal to re­sult in a post-tax gain of about $8 mil­lion to be recorded in its full-year re­sults.

The sale fol­lows sim­i­lar moves by ANZ, Com­mon­wealth Bank and Na­tional Aus­tralia Bank to cut their ex­po­sure to wealth man­age­ment.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive Jon Sut­ton said the trans­ac­tion made “strate­gic sense” for both par- ties. “St An­drew’s has made a strong con­tri­bu­tion to the BOQ group since its ac­qui­si­tion in 2010, but in­dus­try and busi­ness dy­nam­ics have changed dra­mat­i­cally in re­cent years,” Mr Sut­ton said.

BOQ an­nounced a firsthalf cash profit of $182 mil­lion, driven by a re­turn to lend­ing growth.

Home lend­ing grew 3 per cent in the six months to Fe­bru­ary 28.

Pic­ture: iStock

GO­ING UP: The Re­serve Bank says in­ter­est rates will prob­a­bly rise next year.

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