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Japan Dai-ichi Life to buy insurer Protective Life

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News,Business,Japan,Mergers and Acquisitions

TOKYO (AP) — Japanese insurer Dai-ichi Life Insurance Co. is acquiring Protective Life Corp. of the U.S. for $5.7 billion.

The 100-percent purchase underlines the ambitions of Japan's insurance companies to expand abroad. The local market is shrinking as the Japanese population ages.

Dai-ichi said Wednesday that the acquisition will help its aspirations to become a global insurer. It said it was eager to do more business in the U.S., the world's largest life insurance market.

Protective Life, based in Birmingham, Alabama, is a medium-size insurer in the individual life and annuities business nationwide. It has a market share ranking of 36th in the U.S. as measured by group premium income.

Dai-ichi said it plans to change its management structure to ensure it keeps growing in the U.S.

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