In the context of continuing judicial uncertainty, AXA France announced today the launch of a settlement offer to 15,000 restaurant owners who hold non-damage business interruption policies.
AXA estimates the cost of these settlements to be ca. Euro 0.3 billion, gross of tax and before reinsurance. The cost of the settlements, net of tax and after reinsurance, is expected to be offset by favorable developments in 2021 related to Covid-19, in France and Europe.
"I'm sorry about all that has happened, because we were at odds with restaurants over a misunderstanding," Axa's chief executive Thomas Buberl told Europe 1 radio, noting that some appeals courts rulings had been in Axa's favour.
"We're offering a settlement to lots of people who haven't asked for anything, even those who have lost in court will be able to be part of it," he said.
Restaurants in France were allowed to start serving patrons indoors on Wednesday for the first time since October, as France emerges from a third coronavirus lockdown.