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ING insurance float to raise up to $2 billion


(Reuters) — Dutch financial services company ING Group N.V. expects to raise up to €1.5 billion ($2.03 billion) when it lists a first tranche of shares in its insurance subsidiary next month, the company said on Monday.

ING said it will float 70 million existing ordinary shares of NN Group on July 2, in one of the largest European stock listings this year.

The shares will be priced at between €18.50 and €22.00 ($25.05 and $29.79) apiece, or between €1.3 billion and €1.5 billion in total ($1.76 billion and $2.03 billion), ING said in a statement.

The bank announced the long-expected flotation earlier in June and analysts had expected the tranche to sell for up to €2 billion ($2.71 billion), valuing the insurance operations at roughly €8 billion ($10.83 billion).

After the sale, which includes allocations already made to three anchor investors — the Temasek sovereign fund, its unit SeaTown and private equity investor RRJ Capital — ING's stake in NN Group will decline to 73.6%, the bank said.

It will reduce its holding to below 50% before the end of next year and the insurer will be fully sold by the end of 2016, it said.

NN Group made an operating profit of €905 million ($1.23 billion) in 2013 on gross written premiums of €9.5 billion ($12.86 billion) and has said it will pay out 40% to 50% of its net operating result in dividends on results for 2015 onwards.

ING promised two weeks ago that the insurer, which has a strong position in the Dutch domestic market, a substantial European presence, operations in Japan and a global investment management business, would pay a one-off dividend of €175 million ($237 million) next year.

The insurance business was ING's mainstay before the financial crisis of 2008-2009, when it was a leading proponent of the then fashionable "bancassurance" business model.

But ING, then one of the world's largest banks, was forced to take a €10 billion ($13.54 billion) bailout from the Dutch state during the crisis. It has shed thousands of jobs and sold off tens of billions worth of foreign assets to repay the Dutch state.