News Life and Health07 Dec 2018

Singapore:UK firm takes control of fast growing digital life start-up

| 07 Dec 2018

London-based private equity firm IPGL has announced that it will increase its stake in Singapore Life, a digital start-up which is also Singapore's fastest growing life company.

IPGL, a personal investment company of City of London veteran Michael Spencer, has acquired a further 33.8% stake in the company from Chong Sing Holdings, the Hong Kong-based financial group, for $52.7m, valuing the company as a whole at US$156m. This brings its total holding, including its original investment, to 63.2%.

The transaction has been approved by the MAS.

The investment fits with IPGL’s strategy of investing in high growth FinTech businesses and supporting them through their development. As part of the transaction IPGL has indicated that it would be prepared to invest in further investment rounds as Singapore Life expands.

Singapore Life, which started operations last year, is the first independent life insurance company fully licensed by the MAS since 1970, and it is listed by KPMG as one of the top 100 FinTech firms in the world. Singapore Life was created out of a need for insurance and wealth services that leverage technology to create better customer value and experience.

Singapore Life already provides cover of more than S$6.6bn ($4.8bn) in life insurance to date. The company operates entirely digitally, enabling customers to apply directly for life insurance protection in minutes and to manage their policies on either their desktops or mobile devices. It also uses this technology to provide advisers with an efficient platform from which to advise their clients.

Mr Walter de Oude, Singapore Life’s founder and CEO, said, “I am delighted with this investment and commitment by IPGL, which demonstrates significant confidence in Singapore Life and our success to date. I am looking forward to continuing to work with Michael Spencer and his team to fulfil our company’s enormous potential.”

Mr Spencer added, “We are extremely impressed by what Walter and his team have achieved in a short space of time and pleased that the opportunity arose to increase our investment in Singapore Life. This is exactly the type of disruptive business we like to invest in, one that is making full use of technology to deliver key financial services to customers.”

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