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Aviva to Sell Roadside Rescue Business RAC

British insurer Aviva plans to sell its RAC roadside rescue business, and has hired JP Morgan to manage the sale, Reuters reported. Private equity firms are expected to be most interested in the business, which is valued at 500-600 million pounds ($804 million to $1.12 billion), the Financial Times reported.

(Reuters) – British insurer Aviva has appointed JP Morgan to manage the sale of its RAC roadside rescue business, a person familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The proposed sale comes four months after Aviva, Britain’s second-biggest insurer by market value, announced plans to focus on the markets and businesses where it is strongest, prompting speculation that it could make disposals.

Aviva and JP Morgan both declined to comment.

Aviva shares were up 0.7 percent at 434.65 pence by 1210 GMT, outperforming the FTSE 100 share index, which was up 0.1 percent. The stock has risen 7 percent in the year to date, lagging an 8 percent rise in the Stoxx 600 European share index.

Aviva bought RAC in 2005 for 1.2 billion pounds ($1.93 billion). Private equity companies are expected to be most interested in the business, which is valued at 500-600 million pounds, the Financial Times reported earlier on Friday.

The 114-year old roadside recovery group is one of Britain’s largest, with over 7 million members.

(Reporting by Victoria Howley; additional reporting by Myles Neligan and Karolina Tagaris; Editing by Will Waterman)

($1=.6217 Pound)