Decision based on the business’s ‘significant growth potential’

The Co-operative Group has announced its intention to cancel the sale of its general insurance business.

Group chief executive Euan Sutherland said: “Having considered the sale process, and in light of the changed requirements on us under the bank recapitalisation process, we believe it is in the best interests of our members, customers and colleagues that we retain this strong business and develop it further.

“We received a significant amount of interest in the general insurance business, which reflects its potential.”

The Co-operative Group announced on 21 March 2013 its intention to sell its general insurance arm, with a rumoured asking price of £600m.

Interested buyers over the past 10 months have included Aviva, LV=, L&G and Catalina.

The proceeds of the sale were envisaged to be a part of the group’s planned £1bn contribution to the recapitalisation of The Co-operative Bank.

The group said it would now meet its additional capital commitment to the Bank Recapitalisation Plan through the previously announced and completed disposal of the life and savings business, as planned, and the strategic management of a limited number of property assets.