Royal & SunAlliance (R&SA) took a long-awaited step towards its target of selling off £800m worth of non-core businesses.
It is transferring its asset management arm to Friends Ivory & Sime (FIS) for £240m.
The price was higher than expected by analysts, but will give R&SA badly needed funds to support its book of large commercial risks.
FIS will manage R&SA's general and life insurance funds, currently totalling about £30bn, for 10 years.
The deal increases its assets under management from £34bn to £70bn.
Analyst Roger Hill of UBS Warburg said: "The price was more than we had in our valuations, so in that sense we see it as better for R&SA than we thought.
"It's taken so long to take this first step, we're grateful to see something."
Attention will now focus on how much progress
R&SA has made on its other disposals.
Chief executive Bob Mendelsohn said in February that of seven disposal projects, five had received bids.