Great-West Lifeco Inc. announced today that Jefferson-Pilot Corp. of Greensborro, N.C. has agreed to purchase the U.S. group business of its subsidiary, Canada Life Assurance Co. The transaction is expected to close during the first quarter of 2004, subject to regulatory approvals. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The Canada Life U.S. group business operates from Atlanta, Georgia and consists of group life, disability and dental insurance. The business represents approximately US$340 million in annual premium.

In a statement, Bill McCallum, president and CEO of GWL’s Denver, Colorado based Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Co said in statement that, “This sale will allow Great-West Life & Annuity to continue to focus on its core healthcare and retirement services businesses, and to redirect freed up capital back into these businesses.”

Jefferson-Pilot said it is committed to working with Canada Life to assure a smooth and efficient transition for Canada Life’s current U.S. group customers, distribution systems and home office employees.