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Hartford to sell life, annuity unit to focus on property/casualty

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(Reuters) — Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. said on Monday it would sell its life and annuity unit to a group of investors in a deal valued at $2.05 billion, as it looks to focus on its property/casualty businesses.

The unit, Talcott Resolution, will be acquired by an investor group that includes Cornell Capital and Atlas Merchant Capital, Hartford said.

The deal consists of $1.44 billion cash, a pre-closing cash dividend from Talcott, the unit’s debt and a 9.7% ownership in the new company, Hartford said.

The acquiring investor group, which has deep experience in the insurance industry, will operate Talcott Resolution as a standalone company.

Hartford estimates the sale will result in a GAAP after-tax net loss of about $3.2 billion, which the company would record in the fourth quarter.

Around 400 employees of Hartford will join the new company as part of the deal, the insurer said.

The sale is expected to close in the first half of 2018, Hartford said.