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FITCH POSITIVE ABOUT AON/WTW ASSET SALE

Informa Insurance News 24

FITCH POSITIVE ABOUT AON/WTW ASSET SALE

Fitch Ratings has reacted positively to the proposed sale of certain Willis Towers Watson (WTW) business units to Arthur J Gallagher for $3.6bn, as announced earlier this week. Fitch views the planned divestiture of certain WTW reinsurance, specialty and retail brokerage operations as neutral to the credit ratings of both Willis and Aon. The divestiture of WTW assets is intended to remove regulatory objections to the $30bn merger between the two broking firms. Fitch forecasts Aon’s pro-forma revenues, post the planned divesture, at $19bn, with earnings of more than $5.5bn. Given the scale of the transaction, integration and execution risk will be high, Fitch said. Aon is “strongly positioned” at the BBB+ rating category, with or without the deal closure, Fitch added.

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