Austrian giant snaps up Latvian insurer

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Austrian insurance giant Vienna Insurance Group (VIG) has bought Latvia's Baltikums insurance group, VIG said in a press statement Wednesday.

Vienna Insurance Group has signed an agreement to purchase 100 percent of Baltikums AAS, Riga, subject to regulatory approval. The sum involved has not been revealed.

“VIG has grown on average by around 30 percent per year in the past five years in the Baltic insurance market. The acquisition of Baltikums AAS now gives us the opportunity to continue the prosperous path of our teams. We will take advantage of the attractive market potential and further strengthen our position”, said Peter Hagen, CEO of VIG.

Baltikums is a non-life insurer with an 8 percent market share, making it number 6 in the Latvian insurance market. The company also operates via branches in Lithuania and Estonia. In the financial year 2014, the company generated premiums of more than EUR 20 million.

Its product portfolio includes motor and liability insurance, health and travel insurance and presently employs about 250 people.

VIG is already present in the Latvian market with its life insurance company Compensa Life.

The purchase follows June's acquisition by VIG of Lithuanian insurer Finsaltas, signalling its intention of taking a larger share of the still-developing Baltic insurance market.

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