Zurich Insurance’s U.S. footprint currently includes Farmers Group, an administrator of insurance policies for Farmers Insurance. Zurich Insurance acquired Farmers Group in 1998, while Farmers Insurance is owned by its policyholders.
Farmers Insurance was the fifth- and seventh-largest provider of home and auto insurance, respectively, in the United States in 2019, according to data provider S&P Global Market Intelligence. MetLife was 14th and 18th, respectively.
The deal, executed through its Farmers Group Inc. subsidiary, would expand Zurich Insurance’s property/casualty business, as the industry grapples with fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, which drove up claims for business interruptions and event cancellations.
It would also allow MetLife to exit a business in which it faces fierce competition from larger players such as State Farm, GEICO and Progressive Insurance.
Switzerland’s Zurich Insurance Group AG is in advanced talks to acquire MetLife Inc.’s U.S. property/casualty car and home insurance unit for close to $4 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.