Aviva

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Aviva plc
Type Public limited company
Traded as LSEAV., NYSEAV
Industry Financial services
Predecessor(s) CGU
Norwich Union
Founded 2000 (by merger)
Headquarters St. Helen's Tower
London, United Kingdom
Key people John McFarlane
(Chairman)
Mark Wilson
(CEO)
Services Life insurance
Pensions
General Insurance
Operating income £2.049 billion (2013)[1]
Net income £2.151 billion (2013)[1]
Employees 40,800 (end 2011)[2]
Website aviva.com

Aviva plc is a British multinational insurance company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the sixth-largest insurance company in the world measured by net premium income and has around 43 million customers across 21 countries.[3] It is the market leader in both general insurance and life and pensions in the UK and has major businesses in Asia, continental Europe and North America.[3]

Aviva has a primary listing on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index. It has a secondary listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

Name[edit]

The name of the company upon its formation in May 2000 was CGNU plc.[4] In April 2002 the company's shareholders voted to change the company name to "Aviva plc", an invented word derived from "viva", the Latin for 'life' and designed to be short, memorable and work worldwide.[5] In April 2008 Aviva announced that it would adopt the "Aviva" name as its worldwide consumer-facing brand, and that the Norwich Union brand would be phased out in the United Kingdom.[6]

History[edit]

Aviva can trace its history back to the establishment of the Hand in Hand Fire & Life Insurance Society in London in 1696.[7]

Predecessor company London and Lancashire Fire and Life, pictured in Dublin, ca. 1871

It was created by a merger of two British insurance firms, Norwich Union and CGU plc[8] (itself created by the 1998 merger of Commercial Union and General Accident[9]) as CGNU in 2000. The Aviva name was adopted in July 2002.[10] Thereafter, most of the group operations, except for some strong local brands, were carried out under the uniform brand "Aviva".[11]

During March 2005 Aviva acquired the RAC plc breakdown recovery operation for around £1.1 billion.[12]

In July 2006, Aviva greatly increased its presence in the United States by acquiring AmerUs Group, a Des Moines-based financial services company founded in 1896 in a $2.9 billion (£1.6 billion) deal.[13] AmerUs Group was rebranded as Aviva USA when the acquisition was completed.

The Company continued to use the Norwich Union name as a trading name in the UK until 1 June 2009 when it became formally known as Aviva within the United Kingdom. The launch was supported by a £9 million advertising campaign to promote the rebranding (one of the most expensive ever in the UK insurance field), with the participation of celebrities including Bruce Willis and Alice Cooper.[14]

In June 2009 the Company decided to dispose of Navigator, its Australian wealth management business, to National Australia Bank for A$825 million (£401 million).[15]

In October 2009 the company decided to focus on its commercial insurance sector and demonstrate its commitment to brokers by launching their 'find a broker' facility, using the British Insurance Brokers Association search engine. To help them with this endeavour, Paul Whitehouse was recruited to play the part of a successful hairdresser running three salons. The message of the campaign focused on business insurance through insurance brokers.[16] The closing line of the campaign was "We're in business to keep you in business".

In September 2011, Aviva completed the sale of RAC plc breakdown recovery operation for £1.0 billion to The Carlyle Group.[17]

In February 2012, Aviva sold its occupational health business to the British support services company Capita.[18][19]

In July 2012, Aviva announced plans to sell or close 16 non-core businesses in order to simplify its activities and boost shareholder returns.[20] As part of the plans Aviva announced the sale of its operations in South Korea and the closure to new business of its bulk-buying annuity unit in the United Kingdom.[20]

In August 2012, Aviva announced that up to 800 jobs would be lost following a reorganization caused by further turmoil in the Eurozone.[2]

In December 2012, Aviva agreed to sell Aviva USA Corporation to Athene Holding for US$1.8 billion (£1.1 billion) as part of a plan to improve shareholder returns and reduce the group's capital requirements.[21][22] Athene subsequently sold the life insurance business of Aviva to Atlantic Global.[23]

Operations[edit]

St. Helen's, Aviva's world headquarters in London

Aviva's main activities are the provision of general and life insurance, long-term savings products and fund management services. The group has around 36,600 employees, £379 billion of assets under management and 43 million customers.[3]

Principal subsidiaries[edit]

  • United Kingdom
    • Aviva Life – Pensions, investments, Life Insurance and long term savings (formerly Norwich Union)
    • Aviva Insurance – General Insurance
    • Aviva Investors – Fund Management (formerly Morley)
  • Ireland
  • Poland – Aviva
  • Spain
  • Netherlands – Delta Lloyd Groep (43.1% shareholding)
  • Canada – Aviva Canada
  • France – Aviva France
  • China – Aviva-Cofco
  • India – Aviva India
  • Malaysia – CIMB Aviva
  • Singapore
  • Turkey
    • AvivaSA Emeklilik
    • Aviva Sigorta
  • Taiwan – First Aviva (in traditional Chinese)
  • Sri Lanka
  • Russia - Aviva Russia
  • Lithuania
  • Italy – Aviva Italia Holding S.p.A.
  • South Korea - Woori Aviva
Former companies

Senior management[edit]

CEO Richard Harvey retired on 11 July 2007. His successor was Andrew Moss, the former group finance director.[24] Moss was paid an annual base salary of £925,000 for his role as Chief Executive.[25] Moss resigned on 8 May 2012 after shareholders voted down a proposed senior management pay deal which would have seen Moss increase his basic pay by 5% despite several years of Aviva underperformance.[26] John McFarlane was appointed to the board of Aviva plc in September 2011. Following the departure of Aviva’s CEO, Andrew Moss,[26] McFarlane assumed the role of executive deputy chairman and became executive chairman on 1 July 2012. On 20 November 2012, Aviva announced that Mark Wilson will become CEO on 1 January 2013.[27]

Sponsorships[edit]

In May 2008 Aviva became Norwich City Football Club's main sponsor. In a 2009 television advert starring Paul Whitehouse they feature a Plymouth Argyle F.C. fan who uses Aviva car insurance followed by a Green Army chant.[28] It also acquired the naming rights for the redeveloped Lansdowne Road stadium in Dublin, Ireland, and will now be called the Aviva Stadium.[29]

In 2010, Aviva also took over sponsorship of rugby union's English Premiership from Guinness. The four-year sponsorship deal is valued at £20 million.[30]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Preliminary Results 2013" (PDF). Retrieved 9 March 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "August 24, 2012 - Aviva to Cut Up to 800 Jobs as McFarlane Reshapes Insurer". Bloomberg. 
  3. ^ a b c "Aviva plc Annual Report and Accounts 2011". Aviva plc. Retrieved 1 May 2012. 
  4. ^ Gary Armstrong; Michael Harker; Philip Kotler; Ross Brennan (2009). Marketing: An Introduction. Pearson Education. p. 246. ISBN 978-0-273-71395-1. Retrieved 15 September 2012. 
  5. ^ "Changing the name of the game". The Scotsman. 3 May 2008. Retrieved 15 September 2012. 
  6. ^ Ferreira-Marques, Clara (29 April 2008). "Aviva scraps Norwich Union name". Reuters. Retrieved 15 September 2012. 
  7. ^ "Aviva Heritage Events Timeline". Aviva plc. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  8. ^ "CGU and Norwich Union merge". BBC News. 21 February 2000. 
  9. ^ "Commercial Union, General Accident join". [dead link]
  10. ^ "Why only Aviva's directors will be 'living well'". London: The Telegraph. 19 March 2002. Retrieved 24 March 2012. 
  11. ^ "Aviva PLC". Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  12. ^ "RAC History". Racnews.co.uk. 31 December 2007. Retrieved 17 April 2011. 
  13. ^ "Aviva to acquire AmerUs for $2.9 billion". NBCNews.com. 2006. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  14. ^ Cockcroft, Lucy (22 December 2008). "Bruce Willis and Elle Macpherson star in £9 million Norwich Union advert". The Daily Telegraph (London). 
  15. ^ NAB buys Aviva to become biggest life insurer Sydney Morning Herald, 22 June 2009
  16. ^ Baker, Rosie (2 October 2009). "Aviva launches first ad aimed at business.". Marketing Week. Retrieved 3 November 2009. 
  17. ^ "Aviva completes the sale of RAC". aviva.com. 30 September 2011. Retrieved 6 October 2011. 
  18. ^ "Capita announces purchase of Aviva UK Health". Reed Business Information. 29 February 2012. Retrieved 21 June 2013. 
  19. ^ "Capita to acquire Aviva's occupational health business". Capita PLC. 29 February 2012. Retrieved 21 June 2013. 
  20. ^ a b "Insurer Aviva to cut 16 underperforming businesses". BBC News. 5 July 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2012. 
  21. ^ Neligan, Myles (21 December 2012). "Insurer Aviva sells U.S. unit for $1.8 billion". Reuters. Retrieved 30 December 2012. 
  22. ^ "Aviva sells US business for £1.1bn". London: The Telegraph. 21 December 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2012. [dead link]
  23. ^ Aviva USA life insurance unit to be dealt to Global Atlantic
  24. ^ "Aviva lines up new Chief Executive". [dead link]
  25. ^ "Directors' remuneration report". Annual report and accounts 2008. Aviva. Retrieved 23 August 2009. 
  26. ^ a b Treanor, Jill; Kollewe, Julia (8 May 2012). "Aviva chief executive steps down after shareholder revolt – with £1.75m payoff". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-05-08. 
  27. ^ Kollewe, Julia (20 November 2012). "Aviva appoints Mark Wilson chief executive – but no 'golden hello". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 1 December 2012. 
  28. ^ EU Football.
  29. ^ New Lansdowne Road to be called the Aviva Stadium Belfast Telegraph, 12 February 2009
  30. ^ Aviva Premiership Table BBC Sport

External links[edit]