Aviva hits the road to sell Friends Life deal


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The Independent Online

Aviva boss Mark Wilson will this week embark on a City roadshow as his advisers pore over the details of the insurer’s £5.6bn merger with rival Friends Life.

Mr Wilson is to meet leading institutional investors and analysts after a leak of the deal on Friday evening.

A combined group would dominate the UK life and pensions industry with 16 million customers and may lead to further consolidation.

Aviva said Friends’ board had agreed to recommend the deal to shareholders, but added that it was still looking through the books as part of the due diligence process.

A rally in Friends Life’s share price today is likely to lead to calls for Aviva to sweeten the terms of the 400p all-share merger, a 15 per cent premium on Friends’ closing share price on Friday.