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Sanlam says it is not giving up on Moroccan business despite Covid-19-led setback

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South African financial services group Sanlam said that it is not giving up on its Saham business despite «signs of misfiring after the R5.8 billion impairment that the company took on the Moroccan headquartered insurer in the first six months of 2020».

Sanlam acquired Saham in 2018, paying a premium. Although the deal was delayed due to diplomatic problems, the acquisition was seen by the South African firm as a «perfect combination of the continents ‘s biggest life and biggest general insurer».

However, the current health crisis and the «the premium that Sanlam paid for synergies it was expecting to reap from the merger had to be written off as it became apparent that they would not be realized as soon as the company had expected».

«We have acquired an excellent business that, by its very nature, has had its short-term profits hard-hit by the market volatility on the back of the Covid-19 pandemic», Sanlam CEO Paul Hanratty said.

«This is a short-term situation and is in no way as reflection on shareholders and the current and former management teams of Saham Finances», he added.

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