Prudential is likely to acquire the insurance arm of Thanachart Bank, with an aim to give full momentum to its expansion strategy in Asia.

The UK based underwriter has emerged as a preferred bidder for some of the underwriting business of Thanachart, which has been valued at almost $500m, as reported by the Financial Times.

The proposed acquisition, if finalised, is expected to bolster its presence in the Thai market, although, the deal is yet to be finalized and seems to be impending, the underwriter affirmed.

Canada based Scotiabank owns 49% stake in Thanachart, and the underwriting wings manages life and general insurance operations but Prudential is unlikely to be interested in the non-life business.

Thanachart Life had total assets of Bt23.7bn ($769m) as of end of June 2012, while another of the group’s businesses Siam City Life Assurance had total assets of Bt12.5bn.