Prudential chief executive Tidjane Thiam has admitted to holding detailed talks with Clive Cowdery over the sale of the insurer's UK business, but said he would only sell if the price offered was irresistible.
The Pru chief told the Daily Mail: "The UK business plays a key role for Prudential. It is a provider of cash, of capital. It supports our credit rating. Without it I cannot raise any debt.
"All that money accumulated by generations gives the company its strength and has allowed us to do lots of things."
Thiam added: "Whenever anybody asks us about any part of our business it is my duty to look at it and determine whether it is attractive for our shareholders."
However, he confirmed he has held in-depth talks with Cowdery, saying: "Everyone has. It is my fiduciary responsibility.
"Whenever anybody asks us about any part of our business it is my duty to look at it and determine whether it is attractive for our shareholders."
Thiam's comments come after the appointment of UK and Europe chief Rob Devey to lead the integration of the planned acquisition of AIA - the Asian business of AIG.
Succeeding co-founder Simon Rogerson
Janus Henderson Global Dividend Index
More than 10 million shares allocated
Long-term strategic holding
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