Zurich Financial Services, which is seeking to absorb its separate Swiss and UK insurance companies – Zurich Allied and Allied Zurich – has hit out at stock market red tape which prevents closer cross-border working.
Commenting on the current bidding war for control of the London Stock Exchange, ZFS joint chairman and chief executive Rolf Huppi said: “We are very unhappy that stock exchanges cannot find ways of working together to become a common entity without disrupting stock prices.”
He stressed that whatever the outcome of the LSE battle, he hoped future stock exchange regulations would be more conducive to cross-border co-operation.
Speaking earlier during his presentation of ZFS's interim results, Huppi said the insurer has obtained almost all of the regulatory approvals it needs to absorb Allied Zurich and Zurich Allied in October.
After this, ZFS intends to have a primary listing in Switzerland and a secondary listing on the London stock market.
The company said it has also successfully digested the majority of Allied Zurich's London-listed shareholding.
Huppi disclosed that ZFS has achieved this without resorting to its £700m fund earmarked for the purpose of buying back Allied Zurich shares.
Huppi said ZFS was planning to launch a £460m tender to buy out remaining Allied Zurich shareholders by September 16 and the offer will be open for 20 working days.