Shares in Standard Life Aberdeen (LON:SLA) have advanced today as the company unveiled that it had inked a deal to sell its insurance unit, and further updated investors on its full-year performance, posting a rise in earnings. The updates mark a boost for the company, which recently suffered a heavy blow as Lloyds Banking Group (LON:LLOY) moved to pull out £109 billion of assets under management from the group.
As of 09:36 GMT, Standard Life Aberdeen’s share price had added 1.04 percent to 389.70p, outperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index having fallen into the red and currently standing 0.22 percent lower at 7,236.75 points. The group’s shares have added nearly four percent to their value over the past year, as compared with a 0.5-percent dip in the Footsie.
SLA offloads insurance unit
Standard Life Aberdeen announced in a statement this morning that it had inked a deal to sell its capital-intensive insurance business to Phoenix Group, for a total consideration of £3.24 billion, including £2.28 billion in cash and a 19.99-percent shareholding in Phoenix.
“Today’s announcement represents a logical next step in Standard Life Aberdeen’s journey to build a world-class investment company,” the FTSE 100 group’s chief executives Martin Gilbert and Keith Skeoch commented in the statement.
Group posts full-year results
The sale came as Standard Life Aberdeen updated investors on its full-year performance, posting a rise in assets under administration from £647.6 billion to £654.9 billion in 2016, and revealing net outflows of £31 billion, marking an improvement on the prior year’s £36.8 billion outflows. Adjusted profit before tax was little changed at £1.04 billion.
The results follow last year’s merger between Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management, and the company noted today that integration was progressing well, with the group now targeting £250 million of annualised cost synergies.