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OneBeacon, Aspen announce share offers


HAMILTON, Bermuda--OneBeacon Insurance Group Ltd. has launched a $600 million initial public offering of its common shares, while Aspen Insurance Holdings Ltd. has announced the commencement of a $200 million offer of preferred shares.

Proceeds from the OneBeacon share offer--which priced 24 million shares at $25 each--will go to OneBeacon's parent, Hamilton, Bermuda-based reinsurer White Mountains Insurance Group Ltd., a spokeswoman said. Underwriters of the IPO, which is led by Lehman Brothers Inc., were given the option to purchase an additional 3.6 million shares to cover overallotments.

In addition to preferred shares, Hamilton, Bermuda-based insurer and reinsurer Aspen will offer a share repurchase program of up to $300 million of its ordinary shares over the next two years. In a statement, Aspen said it plans to use net proceeds from its preference shares offering towards general corporate purposes, including the repurchase of its outstanding ordinary shares.