Axa Insurance BSC and Norwich Union-Middle East have merged to become Axa Gulf, creating what is thought to be the largest international insurer in the Middle East.

Following local authority approvals, the company, which is headed by CEO Didier Boussemart, will have 300 employees, 10 offices region-wide and a premium income of over $100 million.

Boussemart will be aided by Gulf general manager and Saudi chief operating officer Iain Reid, Saudi Arabia general manager Paul Adamson and platforms general manager Xavier Veyry.

Mr Reid commented at a press conference held at the Gulf International Convention and Exhibition Centre: We’re confident of success in our endeavors and will emerge a stronger, fitter organization with grand plans for the future.

Axa Gulf will be a joint venture with private business conglomerate the Kanoo Group. As a result, Kanoo’s insurance partner, Aviva, has sold its shareholding in Norwich Union Middle East.