Online Insurer ZhongAn Teams up with Japan’s SoftBank for Overseas Expansion

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Chinese online insurer ZhongAn Online P&C Insurance C., Ltd. has announced the execution of shareholder agreement between subsidiary ZhongAn International and Japan’s SoftBank Vision Fund, as part of efforts to drive the company’s overseas expansion.

Under the agreement ZhongAn International  and SoftBank Vision Fund will establish a new business entity to pursues overseas opportunities in the areas of insurtech and fintech, with an initial focus on the Asia-Pacific region.

“Since its inception, ZhongAn International has focused on building technology capacity and fostering platform co-operation to support overseas business development,” said Wayne Xu, vice general manager of ZhongAn Online in charge of international business, according to a  report from China Money Network.

“Going forward, we hope the Asian markets will act as a bridgehead in expanding our business globally and SoftBank is the ideal partner.”

“We are excited to collaborate with ZhongAn to build their capabilities in new and dynamic markets,” said Kentaro Matsui, managing director for SoftBank Investment Advisers.

“I am confident that utilising ZhongAn’s existing technology and know-how alongside SoftBank’s international networks will ensure it is well positioned to capitalise on the tremendous growth potential in both fintech and insurtech across Asia.”

SoftBank Group, the whole owner of SoftBank Vision Fund, is a Japanese multinational conglomerate with major holdings in leading Chinese tech concerns, including a 26% stake in Alibaba, a 42.9% stake in Renren, a roughly 20% stake in Didi Chuxing, as well as a 5% stake in ZhongAn Online.

ZhongAn Online is China’s first and largest online insurer, and was established in November 2013 with capital contributions from Ant Financial, Tencent and Ping An Insurance.

The company is headquartered in Shanghai and has registered capital of 123.1 billion yuan.

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