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BNP Paribas Assurance accelerates development in bancassurance in Turkey

• Partnership with “The New TEB”, the merged establishment formed from two major branch banking networks, TEB and Fortis Bank Turkey, based on a 20-year exclusive distribution agreement

• Acquisition of 100% of Turkish life insurance company Fortis Emeklilik ve Hayat (FEH)

• Expanded range of savings and retirement products (pension funds)

BNP Paribas Assurance (unavailable link) signed an exclusive distribution agreement for 20 years with TEB and Fortis Bank Turkey, now known as “The New TEB”. Under the terms of the agreement, the TEB and Fortis Bank Turkey retail networks will distribute both life & pension products and personal protection insurance products.

BNP Paribas Assurance, through its subsidiary Cardif, become the exclusive provider of savings, pension and personal protection products across the new retail organization. Based on current data the merged entity, “The New TEB”, would rank 9th among Turkish banks in assets, with a network of 630 branches and three million retail clients.

To accelerate marketing of these new products, BNP Paribas Assurance has acquired 100% of Fortis Emeklilik ve Hayat (FEH), the life insurance arm of Ageas (formerly Fortis) in Turkey. FEH already holds a license to market savings and pension products. This transaction, signed in July 2010 between Ageas and BNP Paribas Assurance, has since been approved by all regulatory authorities.

With a population of 76 million people, 70% of them under the age of 40, and the emergence of a new middle class, the Turkish market harbours strong potential growth for insurance products. Turkey enjoys a stable economic environment and an annual economic growth of approximately 8%. The market for pension savings solutions has posted robust development, spurred by changes in the economic and regulatory environment, and is expected to reach over three million clients by 2013.

Cardif, a subsidiary of BNP Paribas Assurance, has been present in Turkey since 2007. A major player in the Turkish insurance market, Cardif designs and markets personal protection products (mainly creditor insurance with cover for unemployment, death or temporary disability) and has forged partnerships with the main banks and financial institutions. With the signature of this agreement, BNP Paribas Assurance is expanding its product offering to savings, creating a comprehensive portfolio of insurance solutions.

Eric Lombard, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of BNP Paribas Assurance, said: “This new partnership strengthens our positions in Turkey. We will contribute our expertise in insurance to „The New TEB" entity, which combines the distribution power of two major retail banking networks, enabling us to become a leading bancassurer in the Turkish market. We will also continue to capitalize on our partnerships with the country's other major banks and financial institutions.”

About BNP Paribas Assurance

BNP Paribas Assurance is the Life and Property & Casualty insurance unit of BNP Paribas. It develops and markets products and services under two commercial brands. Products distributed through the BNP Paribas retail branch network in France are branded BNP Paribas. Those distributed by other channels in France and in international markets are branded Cardif.

BNP Paribas Assurance is one of the world leader in creditor insurance and its life and non-life insurance units have received an AA rating from Standard & Poor's. It had gross written premiums of 25.3 billion euros in 2010. With a diversified geographic footprint, BNP Paribas Assurance has strong positions in Europe, Latin America and Asia. In 2010, BNP Paribas Assurance generated 48% of its gross written premiums outside France.
It counts over 8,500 employees, 73% of them outside France.

BNP Paribas Assurance is actively committed to exemplary Corporate Social Responsibility. It has adopted a Socially Responsible Investment program, encourages diversity throughout the enterprise (earning the "Gender Equality at Work" label in France) and supports local economic development in the markets where it operates.