The merger deal between Aon and Willis Towers Watson, which was announced in March 2020, is expected to be wrapped up in the first half of 2021

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Aon and Willis Towers Watson announced a $30bn merger deal in March 2020. (Credit: Lan56/Wikimedia Commons)

Aon and Willis Towers Watson have moved a step forward in closing their previously announced $30bn merger after securing approvals from their respective shareholders.

The parties said that their respective shareholders voted in favour of all proposals at their respective extraordinary general meetings and also at the special meeting of Willis Towers Watson’s shareholders, which was ordered by the High Court of Ireland.

Shareholders of both the insurance brokerage firms are said to have approved all of the proposals required for closing the combination of the two businesses.

The deal, which was announced in March 2020, is expected to be wrapped up in the first half of 2021, subject to receipt of customary regulatory approvals and meeting of other closing conditions.

Willis Towers Watson CEO comments on the shareholders’ approval

Willis Towers Watson CEO John Haley said: “The vote reflects our shareholders’ confidence in this next step of our journey. We are pleased with the outcome of today’s meetings and we thank all of our shareholders for their support of this combination that will bring together our complementary strengths and expand our capacity to address unmet client need.”

As per the terms of the all-stock deal, Willis Towers Watson’s shareholders will exchange each of their shares with 1.08 of Aon’s shares.

In the combined company, Aon will hold a stake of 63%, while Willis Towers Watson’s shareholders will own the remaining 37% stake.

Aon’s acquisition of its rival insurance brokerage firm will create a more innovative platform that can provide better outcomes for all stakeholders, said its CEO Greg Case at the time of announcing the deal.

Aon CEO comments following the shareholders’ approval

Greg Case said: “Our combination, which will accelerate innovation and strengthen our capability to provide more relevant solutions for clients, has only become more important through the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The events of 2020 are illustrative of the exact type of transformative long-tail risk our new organization will be best positioned to address, creating significant value for clients, colleagues, and shareholders.”