Axa, the French insurance firm, will bid on the portion of its Australian arm it does not own after the subsidiary garnered huge profits over 2004’s first half, Reuters reports.

Axa Asia Pacific would be the parent company’s second huge purchase in the last month, after having just purchased U.S.-based MONY for $1.5 billion. The move toward the Asian market follows a six-month period in which the company has made a sevenfold profit, thanks in large part to positive results in the property and casualty departments.

An analyst at Paris-based Fideuram Wargny, Pierre Bucaille, told Reuters, "Axa is profiting from these good results to make the offer."

The bid is reported to be for $2.2 billion, or $3.75 per share. It already owns almost 49% of the Axa Asia Pacific firm, the No. 2 life insurer in Australia.

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The staff of Money Management Executive ("MME") has prepared these capsule summaries based on reports published by the news sources to which they are attributed. Those news sources are not associated with MME, and have not prepared, sponsored, endorsed, or approved these summaries.

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