30 Nov 2010

AXA brand likely to be lost in merger

7:54 am on 30 November 2010

The AXA brand could disappear from the New Zealand market in coming years, if a $A13 billion merger between AMP and AXA Asia Pacific goes ahead.

The proposed union between the insurers and fund managers, took another step forward on Monday when the companies signed an agreement setting out the terms for a merger.

AMP's managing director of financial services in New Zealand, Jack Regan, says the combined entity would be one of the largest financial services providers in the New Zealand market, with 700,000 customers and 100,000 New Zealand shareholders.

Mr Regan says the merged company would hold about 20% of the life insurance market, but it is inevitable that the entire business will need reshaping in the coming years and the AXA brand will withdraw from both the New Zealand and Australian markets.

He says there will be job losses, but expects much of that to be accounted for by natural attrition.