Prudential is in advanced discussions with AIG and the US Government to buy the giant insurer's Asian assets for $35.5bn (£23.5bn).
However, market rumours suggest the Pru may sell its UK life business to Clive Cowdery's Resolution consolidation vehicle to fund the deal.
Prudential confirmed this morning it is in ‘advanced talks to buy the Asian assets. Last night, the boards of both companies and US officials were understood to have agreed a deal in principle.
Prudential says it is not planning to acquire AIA via a reverse takeover, and says any combination of its businesses would be effected through a new holding company.
Trading in Prudential shares has been suspended temporarily, pending further announcements from the insurer.
It is thought Pru will seek to fund the deal through a rights issue, which would be the largest rights issue in UK corporate history, and possibly the largest rights issue ever undertaken worldwide.
Prudential is expected to pay $25bn in cash and the balance in equity, which may be in preference shares, options or warrants.
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