Mutual may offer shares for sale to raise acquisition funds

Groupama expects sales to reach €20bn in 2012 with revenue excluding acquisitions to rise 6% annually through 2012. But it expects to make acquisitions, Bloomberg reports.

Chief executive officer Jean Azema said acquisitions “will be needed to complete” Groupama’s 2012 growth plan. They could be financed by opening the insurer’s capital to private investors or by a listing.

Groupama may look for a “transforming acquisition” in Europe to add between €6bn and €7bn of annual sales. Poland and Russia maybe target countries.

Credit Agricole SA, France’s largest bank by branches, said it as not planning to merge with Groupama and then take a stake in Societe Generale, denying a report in Le Monde newspaper. Societe Generale said yesterday that it “was not approached for this project.”