The German financial supervisory authority, BaFin, has approved the acquisition of Generali Deutschland’s pension fund by Frankfurter Leben, the Italian insurance group said in a statement.

Generali Deutschland Pensionskasse, founded in 2002 as a specialised pension company, will hand over to Frankfurter Leben around 150,000 policies and €2.8bn invested assets.

The scheme was closed to new business at the end of 2016.

A protracted period of low interest rates has hit pension funds hard, with a shift to high-yield pure biometric security that is out of reach for the scheme, according to Generali.

The number of contracts in Generali’s portfolio fell by 3,796 to 152,399 last year, it added.

Earlier this year, research conducted by BaFin revealed that the number of Pensionskassen recording negative returns, suffering from higher interest rates and inflation, almost doubled, from eight in 2021 to 15 in 2022.

Generali expects to cash in approximately €300m after tax from the disposal, at consolidated level in the fourth quarter of 2023, it said. The divestment will also have a positive impact on the reported net result and no impact on the adjusted net result, it added.

The sale is in line with the “Lifetime Partner 24: Driving Growth” strategy launched by Generali to boost the profile and profitability of its life business, it said.

For Frankfurter Leben, Generali Pensionskasse is the sixth takeover of a German life insurer and occupational pensions institution.

In September, it acquired the portfolio of life insurance company Die Landeslebenshilfe (LLH) with around 11,000 contracts and €150m invested assets.

Frankfurter Leben plans to reinforce its role of specialised platform for pension and life insurance products in the German market, it said.

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