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Aurigen Re debut deepens Canadian insurance capital pool

One of Canada's few globally competitive sectors is insurance, and that industry just got deeper with the birth of Aurigen Re Capital. Aurigen announced Monday that it competed a round of fund raising that pulled in $500-million to start a Canadian life reinsurance business. The deal is being billed as the largest financing ever done for a financial services start-up. The company is attempting to capitalize on the life insurance industry's growing need to offset counterparty risk, add financial capacity and access customized reinsurance solutions. The founder of Aurigen and its chief executive officer is Alan Ryder, who most recently served as president of GE's Canadian life reinsurance business, Employers Reassurance Canada. (Mr. Ryder also writes a terrfic column on hockey statistics for the Globe and Mail.) Aurigen's backers include several blue chip domestic and international private equity funds, including EdgeStone Capital Partners of Toronto, and American firms Englefield Capital, Pine Brook Road Partners and Soros Strategic Partners. Scotia Capital advised Aurigen on financing.