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Trade Me sells LifeDirect to adviser

Trade Me has sold its LifeDirect business back to one of its original adviser owners.

Wednesday, January 22nd 2020, 9:06AM

Anders Skoe

LifeDirect has been bought by Mark Solomon, transfer of ownership will occur on April 1.

Solomon is chief executive of Crest Financial Services. He has worked in financial services since 1995 as an adviser. 

Trade Me chief executive Anders Skoe said LifeDirect was a great business with lots of potential but it didn’t fit with Trade Me’s priorities. “We don’t think Trade Me is the best long term owner for LifeDirect, it’s a profitable business with great growth potential but we only have so many resources and we can’t prioritise LifeDirect over the many other opportunities we have.

“We see Mark as a great fit for this business and we’re sure they’ll unleash the potential it has. As a former owner, Mark and his team are very familiar with LifeDirect so they know the business and the industry very well. It feels like a very natural fit for it to return to them.”

Solomon said: “We are delighted to be re-engaging with LifeDirect, supporting its journey to drive great customer outcomes for all New Zealanders.” 

Skoe said Trade Me and Solomon were now working through plans for a smooth transition. “Mark has indicated that he wants to keep the expertise of the LifeDirect team as they look to take the business forward. We’re working through this with him now.”

The sale price remains confidential.

Trade Me delisted from the NZX in May.

In its 2018 annual report, Trade Me noted that the business category comprising dating, insurance and payments businesses had a drop in revenue of 2.3% year-on-year, although that was due in part to divestment of travel businesses.

The year before, the company said the direct-to-market life insurance sales platform experienced an 11.3% drop in revenue, to $5.3 million, due to lower traffic volumes.

Tags: LifeDirect

« [OPINION] Turbulent year aheadReserve Bank critical of life insurance »

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