MassMutual’s HK sale: a bet on a digital future

The US firm now has a front row seat on how Chinese fintech firms use data and robo-advisory to sell to China’s emerging middle class, tricks it can export to the US.

MassMutual’s sale of its Asian arm to a group of Asian investors for $1.7 billion is a bet that it can upgrade its staid life insurance business by working with internet-savvy fintech firms.

Two of the buyers of the unit, called MassMutual Asia, are backed by Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba, namely a small Hong Kong-listed robo-advisory firm, Yunfeng Financial Group, and the world's largest mobile and online payments platform Ant Financial

As part of the deal the US mutual life insurance company will take a 24.8% stake in Yunfeng FG and has negotiated a strategic alliance with Ant Financial in the US...

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