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TMCNet:  Aegon to Divest Its Business in Ireland

[August 10, 2017]

Aegon to Divest Its Business in Ireland

THE HAGUE, Netherlands, August 10, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --

Aegon has agreed to sell Aegon Ireland plc to AGER Bermuda Holding Ltd., the holding company of the European operations of Athene Holding Ltd. This transaction will further optimize Aegon's portfolio of businesses and increase its financial flexibility.  

The proceeds from the divestment of Aegon Ireland, a provider of unit linked guarantee and offshore bond products predominantly in the United Kingdom, will amount to 81% of the Own Funds at the time of closing. Solvency II Own Funds of Aegon Ireland were approximately GBP 200 million (EUR 220 million) as of June 30, 2017. Aegon's group solvency ratio is estimated to improve by approximately 2%-points as a result of the transaction.

"Aegon continuously reviews its portfolio of businesses in order to ensure that they fit the wider strategy of the group, and we have come to the conclusion to divest our business in Ireland," said Alex Wynaendts, CEO of Aegon. "We believe this change in ownership is in the best interest of all stakeholders concerned, and I would like to thank everyone at Aegon Ireland for their contribution to the company."

Based on the book value as of June 30, 2017, the book loss is expected to amount to approximately GBP 115 million (EUR 125 million), subject to certain closing and market conditions, and will be reported in Other charges. This divestment is expected to have an immaterial impact on underlying earnings before tax going forward. The transaction is subject to normal regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018.

About Aegon 

Aegon's roots go back more than 170 years - to the first half of the nineteenth century. Since then, Aegon has grown into an international company, with businesses in more than 20 countries in the Americas, Europe and Asia. Today, Aegon is one of the world's leading financial services organizations, providing life insurance, pensions and asset management. Aegon's purpose is to help people achieve a lifetime of financial security. More information on aegon.com/about.

For the Editor

Updates

Forward-looking statements 

The statements contained in this document that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements as defined in the US Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The following are words that identify such forward-looking statements: aim, believe, estimate, target, intend, may, expect, anticipate, predict, project, counting on, plan, continue, want, forecast, goal, should, would, is confident, will, and similar expressions as they relate to Aegon. Thee statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Aegon undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which merely reflect company expectations at the time of writing. Actual results may differ materially from expectations conveyed in forward-looking statements due to changes caused by various risks and uncertainties. Such risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to the following:

  • Changes in general economic conditions, particularly in the United States, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom;
  • Changes in the performance of financial markets, including emerging markets, such as with regard to:
      - The frequency and severity of defaults by issuers in Aegon's fixed income investment portfolios;
      - The effects of corporate bankruptcies and/or accounting restatements on the financial markets and the resulting decline in the value of equity and debt securities Aegon holds; and
      - The effects of declining creditworthiness of certain public sector securities and the resulting decline in the value of government exposure that Aegon holds;
  • Changes in the performance of Aegon's investment portfolio and decline in ratings of Aegon's counterparties;
  • Consequences of a potential (partial) break-up of the euro;
  • Consequences of the anticipated exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union;
  • The frequency and severity of insured loss events;
  • Changes affecting longevity, mortality, morbidity, persistence and other factors that may impact the profitability of Aegon's insurance products;
  • Reinsurers to whom Aegon has ceded significant underwriting risks may fail to meet their obligations;
  • Changes affecting interest rate levels and continuing low or rapidly changing interest rate levels;
  • Changes affecting currency exchange rates, in particular the EUR/USD and EUR/GBP exchange rates;
  • Changes in the availability of, and costs associated with, liquidity sources such as bank and capital markets funding, as well as conditions in the credit markets in general such as changes in borrower and counterparty creditworthiness;
  • Increasing levels of competition in the United States, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and emerging markets;
  • Changes in laws and regulations, particularly those affecting Aegon's operations' ability to hire and retain key personnel, taxation of Aegon companies, the products Aegon sells, and the attractiveness of certain products to its consumers;
  • Regulatory changes relating to the pensions, investment, and insurance industries in the jurisdictions in which Aegon operates;
  • Standard setting initiatives of supranational standard setting bodies such as the Financial Stability Board and the International Association of Insurance Supervisors or changes to such standards that may have an impact on regional (such as EU), national or US federal or state level financial regulation or the application thereof to Aegon, including the designation of Aegon by the Financial Stability Board as a Global Systemically Important Insurer (G-SII);
  • Changes in customer behavior and public opinion in general related to, among other things, the type of products Aegon sells, including legal, regulatory or commercial necessity to meet changing customer expectations;
  • Acts of God, acts of terrorism, acts of war and pandemics;
  • Changes in the policies of central banks and/or governments;
  • Lowering of one or more of Aegon's debt ratings issued by recognized rating organizations and the adverse impact such action may have on Aegon's ability to raise capital and on its liquidity and financial condition;
  • Lowering of one or more of insurer financial strength ratings of Aegon's insurance subsidiaries and the adverse impact such action may have on the premium writings, policy retention, profitability and liquidity of its insurance subsidiaries;
  • The effect of the European Union's Solvency II requirements and other regulations in other jurisdictions affecting the capital Aegon is required to maintain;
  • Litigation or regulatory action that could require Aegon to pay significant damages or change the way Aegon does business;
  • As Aegon's operations support complex transactions and are highly dependent on the proper functioning of information technology, a computer system failure or security breach may disrupt Aegon's business, damage its reputation and adversely affect its results of operations, financial condition and cash flows;
  • Customer responsiveness to both new products and distribution channels;
  • Competitive, legal, regulatory, or tax changes that affect profitability, the distribution cost of or demand for Aegon's products;
  • Changes in accounting regulations and policies or a change by Aegon in applying such regulations and policies, voluntarily or otherwise, which may affect Aegon's reported results and shareholders' equity;
  • Aegon's projected results are highly sensitive to complex mathematical models of financial markets, mortality, longevity, and other dynamic systems subject to shocks and unpredictable volatility. Should assumptions to these models later prove incorrect, or should errors in those models escape the controls in place to detect them, future performance will vary from projected results;
  • The impact of acquisitions and divestitures, restructurings, product withdrawals and other unusual items, including Aegon's ability to integrate acquisitions and to obtain the anticipated results and synergies from acquisitions;
  • Catastrophic events, either manmade or by nature, could result in material losses and significantly interrupt Aegon's business;
  • Aegon's failure to achieve anticipated levels of earnings or operational efficiencies as well as other cost saving and excess capital and leverage ratio management initiatives; and
  • This press release contains information that qualifies, or may qualify, as inside information within the meaning of Article 7(1) of the EU Market Abuse Regulation.

Further details of potential risks and uncertainties affecting Aegon are described in its filings with the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets and the US Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Annual Report. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this document. Except as required by any applicable law or regulation, Aegon expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in Aegon's expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.

Contacts
Media relations
Debora de Laaf
+31(0)70-344-8730
gcc@aegon.com
   
Investor relations
Willem van den Berg
+31(0)70-344-8405
ir@aegon.com



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