Prudential Financial Incorporated, a US-based financial services company, recently announced a three- to five-year investment of USD 350 million in life insurance companies in African countries such as Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria. The investment will be managed by LeapFrog Investments, a for-profit private equity fund that is based in Mauritius and has invested heavily in microinsurance .
Charles Lowrey, the CEO of Prudential’s international business, said, “The investment expands Prudential’s footprint into Africa, a continent that we believe offers tremendous potential for growth over the long term .”
Dr. Andrew Kuper, the founder and CEO of LeapFrog Investments, said, “The global insurance industry is looking for ways to close the protection gap for millions of people in emerging markets. This partnership will help address that need, while tapping some of the world’s highest growth markets. […] By enabling LeapFrog to pursue larger and more established assets than via our private equity funds, this partnership also diversifies our capabilities as an alternative investment group .”
As of December 2014, Prudential Financial reported total assets of USD 770 billion and net annual income of USD 1.4 billion. As of January 2016, LeapFrog Investments reported a total fund size of approximately USD 1 billion.
By Kevin van den Brink, Research Associate
About Prudential Financial Incorporated
Founded in 1875 in the US city of Newark, New Jersey, Prudential Financial Incorporated is a holding company whose subsidiaries provide insurance, investment management, and other financial products and services to both retail and institutional customers in 31 countries. As of December 2014, the company reported total assets of USD 770 billion and net annual income of USD 1.4 billion.
About LeapFrog Investments
LeapFrog Investments, which was founded in 2007 by Dr. Andrew Kuper and Dr. Jim Roth, is a for-profit private equity fund aimed at earning large returns by investing in and otherwise supporting financial services for the un- and underbanked. LeapFrog’s investors include Accion, the Calvert Foundation, the European Investment Bank, Flagstone Reinsurance, German development organization Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO), the Omidyar Network, Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), Prudential Financial Incorporated, the Soros Economic Development Fund. LeapFrog team members have also committed USD 1 million of their personal money to the fund. Based in Mauritius, the fund focuses on ventures in Africa and Asia. As of January 2016, LeapFrog Investments reported a total fund size of approximately USD 1 billion.