Alibaba's financial service affiliate Zhejiang Ant Small & Micro Financial Services Group (Ant Financial) has agreed to purchase a 60% stake in Cathay Financial Holdings’ Chinese subsidiary Cathay Insurance, for around CNY1.2bn ($188m).


Established in 2008 and based in Shanghai, Cathay Insurance is a joint venture (JV) of Cathay Financial Holdings’ wholly owned subsidiaries Cathay Life Insurance and Cathay Century Insurance.

Under the deal, Ant Financial will acquire all the new shares to be issued in Cathay Insurance, while Cathay Life and Cathay Century will have 20% stake each in the JV.

The deal will allow Ant Financial to provide online insurance services, in addition to expanding its range of products.

Taiwan-based Cathay Financial Holdings, through its life insurance division, offers life insurance, injury insurance, health insurance, annuity insurance and investment insurance.

Its property and casualty insurance division provides automobile insurance, fire insurance, flood insurance, engineering insurance and other insurances.

In November 2014, Cathay Financial Holdings subsidiary Cathay Life agreed to acquire Conning Holdings and all of its subsidiaries, for around $240m.

Currently, Ant Financial provides a broad range of online financial services such as third-party payment, micro-financing, wealth management and credit reviews, according to Cathay Financial.

Ant Financial also operates Alipay, an online payment platform that has around 400 million active users.

Image: Ant Financial to acquire 60% interest in Cathay Insurance. Photo: courtesy of Stuart Miles/