Genworth-China Oceanwide transaction delayed for a 13th time

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The deadline for China Oceanwide to complete its acquisition of Genworth Financial was extended for a 13th time, following completion of the sale of Genworth MI Canada to Brookfield Business Partners.

Some of the previous U.S. regulatory approvals of the transaction needed updating to reflect Genworth's sale of its stake in the Canadian business. In addition, the New York Department of Financial Service's approval expired earlier in the year. A reapproval is needed from the NYDFS along with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

The transaction deadline was pushed to March 31, 2020 from Dec. 31.

"The extension allows significant additional time for regulators to complete their review of updated information including the recent sale of our Canadian mortgage insurance business, and for the NYDFS to review the results of our New York subsidiary's annual assumption and margin reviews, which they have linked to their re-approval of the transaction," Tom McInerney, president and CEO of Genworth Financial, said in a press release. "We continue to believe the transaction with Oceanwide provides the best, most certain value for Genworth stockholders."

The $2.7 billion M&A agreement celebrated its third anniversary in October; China Oceanwide agreed to pay $5.43 per share in cash for Genworth, a 4.2% premium to its Oct. 21, 2016 closing price.

Previously, trying to get approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States held up completion of the deal. However, after CFIUS agreed to conditions regarding data security from Genworth and China Oceanwide in June 2018, other roadblocks emerged, including Canadian regulators' inaction on the merger application.

To get past that, Genworth Financial announced in August it was selling its 57% stake in the separately traded Genworth MI Canada to Brookfield Business Partners. That deal closed on Dec. 13 at a price of C$48.86 (U.S. $37.08) per share.

(Genworth has maintained its majority ownership of the Australian mortgage insurance business.)

At first, the delay appeared to do some harm to Genworth's U.S. private mortgage insurance business.

After initially suffering some market share loss as the transaction dragged on, Genworth had $18.9 billion of new insurance written, making it fourth among the six private mortgage insurers. That was just shy of the $19.1 billion MGIC wrote.

When the latest extension was announced prior to the stock market opening on Dec. 23, Genworth opened at $4.47 per share and fell to $4.29 per share by 10:30 a.m.

Once Genworth receives all its approvals for the transaction, China's State Administration of Foreign Exchange has to approve the currency conversion and clearance of funds.

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