Japan Post Holdings’ $2.4 billion Acquisition of a 7% Stake in Aflac

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP has advised Japan Post Holdings Co., Ltd. (“Japan Post Holdings”) in its planned purchase of a strategic stake of approximately 7% of outstanding common shares of Aflac Incorporated (“Aflac”) through a trust.

All shares will be acquired through open market or private block purchases in the United States.

Japan Post Co., Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Japan Post Holdings, will continue to offer Aflac’s cancer products through more than 20,000 postal outlets across Japan, as well as through Japan Post Insurance Co., Ltd. and its 76 directly managed sales offices. The parties will also continue to collaborate to promote cancer awareness and education, cancer screening, and philanthropic sponsorship of cancer-related causes in Japan.

This strategic investment is subject to certain regulatory approvals in Japan, and the US regulatory approvals are anticipated in the second half of 2019.

Japan Post group consists of Japan Post Holdings and its three operating subsidiaries: Japan Post Co., Ltd.; Japan Post Insurance Co., Ltd.; and Japan Post Bank Co., Ltd. These subsidiaries provide universal postal services as well as a variety of financial products in post offices throughout Japan.

Aflac is a Fortune 500 company, providing financial protection to more than 50 million people worldwide. Founded in 1955, Aflac is the leader in the United States for voluntary insurance sales at the worksite. In Japan, Aflac is the leading provider of medical and cancer insurance, and insures 1 in 4 households.

The Debevoise team advising Japan Post Holdings was led by partners E. Drew Dutton (Picture) and Nicholas F. Potter, who are based in the firm’s New York office, and partner Ezra Borut, who is based in the firm’s Tokyo office. The team also included US-based partners Morgan J. Hayes, Gregory V. Gooding, Gary M. Friedman and Jeffrey P. Cunard, counsel Kyra K. Bromley, and associates Paulina Stanfel and Morgan S. Aveni.

Involved fees earner: Ezra Borut – Debevoise & Plimpton; Kyra Bromley – Debevoise & Plimpton; Jeffrey Cunard – Debevoise & Plimpton; Drew Dutton – Debevoise & Plimpton; Gary Friedman – Debevoise & Plimpton; Gregory Gooding – Debevoise & Plimpton; Morgan Hayes – Debevoise & Plimpton; Nicholas Potter – Debevoise & Plimpton; Paulina Stanfel – Debevoise & Plimpton;

Law Firms: Debevoise & Plimpton;

Clients: Japan Post Holding;

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Author: Michael Patrini