Sony Life Insurance Co. and major Dutch insurer AEGON Group (AEG) stated their joint venture in Japan has got a life insurance business license from the Financial Services Agency (FSA). The collaboration will start business operations in December.
The new company will be known as AEGON Sony Life Insurance Co. (ASLIC) with equal equity ownership of Sony Life and AEGON. ASLIC will sell variable annuity insurance products.
The intention to establish the life insurance company was announced on Jan 25, 2007. The joint venture had originally planned to begin sales in 2008. But the global financial crisis prompted the FSA to adopt tougher regulations, forcing the venture to postpone its business operations.
To help prepare for a comfortable post-retirement life, the demand for variable annuities is expected to grow among the aging population in Japan. Japan is one of the most rapidly aging societies with more than 40% of the population currently over the age of 50. We expect that the demand for annuity products will continue as the baby boom generation reaches retirement age over the next several years. Deregulation of the sale of variable annuity products through banks in 2002 in Japan will provide further boost to the sale.
The venture will benefit both the parent companies. Sony Life will be able to leverage its ‘Lifeplanner’ distribution network in the Japanese markets by availing a broad range of financial products to the customers. AEGON can further its operations in Asia, where it has ventured in the recent years.

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