ANZ has sold its insurance business in New Zealand to global player Cigna

William West/AFP/Getty Images

ANZ Bank’s New Zealand arm is selling its local insurance business OnePath Life NZ Limited to Cigna Corporation for NZ$700 million ($AU644 million), part of the bank’s push to simplify its business.

The sale includes a 20-year strategic alliance for Cigna to provide insurance solutions for ANZ customers

“Under this agreement, ANZ will continue to provide life insurance to our customers but these insurance policies will now be manufactured and managed by a world-class insurance provider in Cigna,” says ANZ New Zealand CEO David Hisco.

“This is consistent with how we provide motor vehicle, home, commercial and travel insurance using a range of specialist insurance partners.”

Cigna is a global health service company with 95 million customers around the world and more than 40,000 employees.

The ANZ bank in December raised $AU2.85 billion from the sale of its Australian life insurance business to the local arm of global financial services company Zurich.

In October, the bank sold its Australian OnePath pensions and investments and aligned dealer groups business to wealth manager IOOF for $AU975 million.

The ANZ is looking at a capital return to shareholders from the sales. Extra dividends and buybacks are on the table.

The latest sale is another step in ANZ’s strategy to create a bank focused on retail and business banking in Australia and New Zealand, and Institutional Banking across the region.

Shayne Elliott, who in January 2016 replaced former CEO Mike Smith who was big on building an Asia business, has pulled the bank away from retail banking in the region to focus on institutional customers.

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