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Exor in new talks with Covea over scrapped $9bn sale of PartnerRE - report

By Reuters

MILAN – Exor, the holding company of Italy’s Agnelli family, has restarted talks with French insurer Covea over a possible sale of reinsurer PrtnerRE, Il Sole 24 Ore reported on Saturday, after the deal was scrapped last year due to the pandemic.

Talks have resumed in the recent weeks, the daily newspaper said, citing several unidentified sources.

Exor and Covea were discussing a valuation for Bermuda-based PartnerRE which was “close” to the one agreed as part of their original deal, one of the sources said.

Covea last year walked away from its planned purchase of 100% Exor-owned PartnerRe for $9 billion in cash, saying it could no longer buy it under the terms of their agreement, which was signed before the coronavirus pandemic.

Exor declined to comment on the report, while privately held Covea was not immediately available for comment.

Under the original terms of the agreement with Covea, Exor would have received an aggregate cash return of $3 billion from its purchase and disposal of PartnerRE, including dividends paid by the reinsurer since 2016, Exor had said.

After the deal collapsed, Covea agreed to invest 1.5 billion euros ($1.75 billion) in entities managed by PartnerRE and in undisclosed investments related to Exor, in a bid to normalise relations between the two companies.

It is not known how long revived talks could last and whether a transaction would be eventually agreed, Il Sole 24 Ore said.

($1 = 0.8593 euros)