AXA to acquire Simplyhealth’s private medical insurance business


AXA has announced that it has reached an agreement with Simplyhealth to acquire its private medical insurance (PMI) business, subject to approval by the appropriate authorities. Simplyhealth has been operating in the UK private medical insurance (PMI) market for thirteen years. Employing around 400 people in Bristol, it provides health cover for over 200,000 people, individually and through its SME and corporate customers.

Simplyhealth undertook a comprehensive strategic review, shaped by the views of thousands of their customers and a detailed analysis of the market for healthcare funding and services. In their analysis, one of the biggest opportunities for them is everyday healthcare, helping customers with their everyday health needs through funding, delivery and guidance. This will now be the focus of their business and their decision to sell the private medical insurance section has been made in this context.

The acquisition will further strengthen AXA’s presence in the UK healthcare market and clearly evidences their continuing commitment to being the preferred provider in each of its key strategic business areas.

Keith Gibbs, Chief Executive, AXA PPP healthcare said:

“With its well balanced, stable book of business, Simplyhealth’s PMI business will be an excellent addition to AXA PPP healthcare and this agreement has presented a rare opportunity to acquire complementary business in the UK. Both companies share a commitment to offering outstanding customer service, supporting their local communities and being an employer of choice.

“We look forward to working with Simplyhealth and its intermediary partners to ensure a smooth transition providing excellent service and continuing cover for all individual and business customers.”

Romana Abdin, Chief Executive of Simplyhealth said:

“This is a deal that makes sense for both sides. The sale of our PMI business will accelerate Simplyhealth’s strategy of investing in everyday healthcare, addressing the everyday conditions that stop people from making the most of life. AXA PPP healthcare has a long-term commitment to the PMI market and this sees them acquiring a business with well-aligned values and great customer service standards. We are delighted to have found a good home for our customers and people in AXA PPP healthcare.”

Simplyhealth’s PMI Centre of Excellence in Bristol, and employees who work wholly or mainly in the acquired businesses, will transfer to AXA PPP healthcare under TUPE and so it is not anticipated that in the short-term there will be any issues amalgamating the two businesses.

ADVO has a large number of clients with Simplyhealth who have proven to be a good insurer partner delivering innovation and a high standard of customer care. Larry Bulmer, ADVO’s CEO stated “We will work closely with Simplyhealth and AXA to ensure we continue to deliver the same standard of support and customer service with stability of future pricing”.

In a further move to strengthen their position with the UK PMI market AXA also announced they had reached an agreement with The Permanent Health Company Ltd (PHC), a specialist health insurance provider, to acquire its private medical insurance (PMI) business, subject to regulatory approval. Following the deal, PHC – whose medical and dental plans are already underwritten by AXA PPP – will continue to operate independently and maintain its intermediary and client support services from its Rickmansworth base.

Read the full press release from AXA here.