The spin-off is expected to occur through a pro rata dividend of Virtus common stock to Phoenix's shareholders

Phoenix, a provider of life insurance, annuity and investment products, has announced that its board of directors has approved the spin-off of
Virtus Investment Partners, a wholly owned subsidiary, into an independent publicly traded asset management firm.


The spin-off will occur through a pro rata dividend of Virtus common stock to Phoenix’s shareholders. The distribution of Virtus stock to Phoenix shareholders is expected to occur on December 31, 2008, at a ratio of one share of Virtus stock for every 20 shares of Phoenix stock held. Fractional shares of Virtus common stock will not be distributed and any Phoenix shareholder entitled to receive a fractional share will, instead, receive a cash payment in January, 2009.


No action is required by Phoenix shareholders, nor will they be required to surrender any Phoenix shares, to receive their Virtus common stock.


Dona Young, chairman, president and CEO of Phoenix, said: We are very pleased to reach this stage of the spin-off, which we believe will provide two main advantages. First, it will increase clarity on valuation for the respective businesses. Second, it will serve the long-term interests of companies and their shareholders by allowing each company to focus on maximising its own, distinct opportunities — different distribution and customer bases — as well as different financial characteristics.