The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) yesterday gave its go-ahead to the purchase of Nan Shan Life Insurance Co (南山人壽) by a local consortium, one month after the regulator gave its conditional approval to the deal.
Ruen Chen Investment Holding Co (潤成投資), which won the bid in January to acquire American International Group (AIG) Inc’s 97.57 percent stake in Nan Shan for US$2.16 billion, has met the commission’s requirements to demonstrate its financial adequacy and long-term commitment, the FSC said in a statement.
Last month, the commission gave its conditional green light and asked the buyer group to put an extra NT$6 billion (US$208.14 million) in a custodial account, given Nan Shan’s weight in the domestic life insurance industry. The commission demanded the buyer meet the requirements within 60 days and said the deal would take effect only after the commission had certified that all the requirements had been met.
Ruen Chen comprises supermarket operator Ruentex Development Co (潤泰新), cement and chemical fiber maker Ruentex Industries Ltd (潤泰全), shoemaker Pou Chen Corp (寶成工業) and other firms.
Nan Shan is the third-largest local insurer by total premiums, serving 4 million policyholders and employing 4,000 staff.
In yesterday’s statement, the FSC said Ruen Chen should put 70 percent of its Nan Shan shares into trust for 10 years. The buyer group must not terminate or alter the terms of the trust without FSC consent, the commission said.
Furthermore, Ruen Chen’s major stakeholders — Samuel Yin (尹衍樑), chairman of Ruentex Group (潤泰集團), Tsai Chi-jui (蔡其瑞) of Pou Chen, and others — must not borrow from Nan Shan or make the insurer buy equities or real estate from their firms, the FSC said.
In addition, Ruen Chen has to cap its debt ratio at 48 percent of the acquisition price and lower the debt figure year-by-year, the commission said. It must not enter joint land development ventures with Nan Shan either, it added.
The financial regulator’s final approval of the deal brings to an end the US insurer’s second bid to sell off its local subsidiary, after AIG failed to sell Nan Shan to a Hong Kong consortium last year due to FSC concerns about the possible involvement of Chinese investors.
NOTABLE SHIFT: By 2030, 50% of all laptops would be assembled in Southeast Asia, while Taiwan would still mostly focus on research and development, a report said Global laptop and desktop computer supply chains are expected to shift significantly away from China in the next 10 years, a Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC, 產業情報研究所) report said. By 2030, only 40 percent of global laptop production would remain in China, said the report, which was released on Thursday. “The reshuffling of the global supply chain will be one of the most important trends in the next 10 years,” the institute said in the report. “In the long run, key component makers will follow laptop assemblers in moving out of China.” The Taipei-based institute predicted most key component makers
NO VIRUS BLUES: A SEMI Taiwan official said that the virus does not slow down the global semiconductor industry’s investment in manufacturing equipment The production value of the nation’s semiconductor industry is expected to grow 16.7 percent this year from last year, outpacing the global industry’s 3.3 percent growth, industry association SEMI said yesterday. That would help Taiwan safeguard its second spot in the global semiconductor market with a production value of more than NT$3 trillion (US$102.73 billion), SEMI Taiwan president Terry Tsao (曹世綸) told a media briefing in Taipei for the Semicon Taiwan trade show beginning today. The global semiconductor industry’s production value is expected to increase to US$426 billion this year, SEMI said. In terms of semiconductor equipment investment, equipment billings from Taiwanese firms
Intel Corp has received licenses from US authorities to continue supplying certain products to Huawei Technologies Co (華為), a company spokesman said yesterday. Washington has been pushing governments around to world to squeeze out Huawei, saying that the telecom giant would hand data to Beijing for espionage. From Monday last week, new curbs have barred US companies from supplying or servicing Huawei. This week, the state-backed China Securities Journal reported that Intel had received permission to supply Huawei. China’s Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC, 中芯國際), which uses US-origin equipment to make chips for Huawei and other companies, last week confirmed that it had sought
Merck Group Taiwan yesterday said that it plans to invest substantially on expanding its fab in Kaohsiung’s Lujhu District (路竹) to better serve its local customers, including Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電). The company said it plans to expand its production space by 50 percent in the next five years and its workforce by about 40 percent, Merck Group Taiwan managing director Dick Hsieh (謝志宏) told a media briefing in Taipei. Hsieh declined to disclose investment details, but said that the latest investment would exceed the total amount Merck has invested in Taiwan over the past few years. Those investments would be