ACR Retakaful eyes non-life segments

ACR Retakaful Holdings will focus on non-life, non-cyclical and speciality risks in the infrastructure and transportation sector, Dubai Group, a 40 per cent shareholder in the firm through subsidiary Dubai Banking Group, said yesterday.

ACR Retakaful was launched yesterday as the world's largest reinsurance company with a paid-up capital of $300 million (Dh1.1bn). As Emirates Business reported on Thursday, the other shareholders are Malaysian company Khazanah Nasional with 40 per cent and Singapore-based Asian Capital Reinsurance with 20 per cent.

The joint venture "reinforces our strong presence in Asian markets", Mohammed Al Gergawi, Chairman of Dubai Holding, the parent group of Dubai Group, said in a statement.

"Our success stems from our in-depth knowledge of the specific requirements in the Islamic finance industry. The deal reflects Dubai Holding's commitment to strategic investments within the reinsurance business, both regionally and globally," he said.

ACR Retakaful will focus on general (non-life), non-cyclical and large speciality risks in infrastructure and transportation industries such as aviation, marine, energy and engineering and will lead the way in channelling these traditional risks from the conventional market into Islamic compliant takaful channels, the statement said. "The joint venture comes at a time when the Middle East's retakaful market is expanding.

"We have a proven track record of successful accomplishments within the reinsurace sector highlighted by our Al Fajer investment in Kuwait. Through our strategic investments, we will continue to play a major role in the regional Islamic finance sector," said Dubai Group Executive Chairman Soud Ba'alawy.

Dubai Banking Group currently has investments in Dubai Bank in the UAE and Malaysia's largest Islamic Bank – Bank Islam – with combined assets of more than $10bn.

ACR is the first independent reinsurance group with an exclusive focus on serving clients in the fast-growing Asian region. It boasts expertise in large risk underwriting in aviation, marine, energy, property, engineering and casualty.