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Axa agrees deal to buy UK financial advisor

French insurer Axa has reached an agreement to acquire the UK financial advisor Thinc Destini for a total outlay of approximately GBP100 million.

Axa’s UK arm has agreed to pay a maximum of GBP70 million to Thinc Destini shareholders based primarily on the forecasted financial performance of the business for 2009. Axa will also pay off Thinc Destini’s existing debt and provide further working capital up to a total of GBP30 million.

The offer has been unanimously recommended by the board of Thinc Destini but it is still subject to shareholder approval.

Our intention is for Axa UK to run Thinc Destini as an independent advisory firm, separate from Axa UK’s product provider businesses. We believe that this acquisition will help strengthen our overall UK market proposition by extending our offer to the provision of independent financial advice and planning services, said Paul Evans, chief executive of Axa Sun Life.

Thinc Destini has approximately GBP3 billion of funds under advice and procured around GBP3 billion of mortgages for customers in 2005.