Life insurance: how to take advantage of unlisted returns

Since 2019, it is in principle possible to invest all life insurance in securities of unlisted companies. The Pacte law in fact wished to encourage this type of investment, in particular via FCPRs (risk mutual investment funds), which can therefore be used, on an equal basis with the other units of account (UC) of the contract, to diversify the stake beyond the guaranteed fund in euros alone. “In eighteen months, the number of supports of this type available has grown significantly,” confirms Gilles Belloir, CEO of

The broker Linxea, for example, offers no less than seven different FCPRs within its Linxea Spirit 2 contract! Most companies, moreover, now require only a small entry ticket for these funds, generally set at 1,000 euros.

As our table shows, some insurers or fund managers continue to provide safeguards, by imposing either proportional investment limits (30% of the contract maximum in the case of NextStage Croissance, or PrimoPacte), or in absolute value (50,000 euros for Bpifrance Entreprises 2, or 500,000 euros for Isatis Capital Vie & Retraite). “These supports remain intended for informed investors, and it is better not to place more than 10% of the outstanding amount of a contract there”, summarizes Antoine Delon, president of the broker Linxea.

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Respecting this proportion is all the more advisable as the liquidity of such funds, despite the efforts of insurers, often remains limited. The FCPR Apeo, for example, offered among other things in the high-end contracts of Société Générale, prohibits any resale of shares before the end of 2025. As for Isatis Capital Vie & Retraite, it can charge exit fees of 5% for any takeover made in the first five years.

If you want to be sure of recovering the capital invested at any time, it is therefore better to favor so-called Evergreen FCPRs, that is to say permanently available, both for purchase and resale. This is the case, in our table, of Lumyna Private Equity World, NextStage Growth, or PrimoPacte. Their redemption value is, in general, established every fortnight: it is therefore this period, at worst, which will apply before receiving your funds.


Life insurance: our rate comparison of nearly 950 contracts

Be careful however, because in the event of death or redemption, some insurers may require you to be returned… only the FCPR shares subscribed to in the contract, which you will therefore have to place in a securities account. An arrangement that avoids them having to keep the securities within their own portfolio, and to pay you the equivalent of the redemption in hard cash. Read the endorsements carefully, because everything depends on the contract: this is how in the event of redemption of NextStage Croissance, you will only receive shares if you have subscribed to it at (SwissLife insurer), while you will indeed be reimbursed in cash if you have taken it out with Altaprofits (Generali insurer).

Do not invest more than 10% of your contract in such risky funds.

Antoine Delon, President of Linxea

If we must avoid any early exit, it is also because these funds most often display a J-shaped performance curve: their valuation in fact drops slightly in the first years, before rising sharply in the following years, as that the companies placed in the portfolio develop, and that they are sold successfully.

  • 12%: this is the average return of the unlisted over a long period

This is how the Apeo fund, launched by Apax Partners in September 2020, recorded a slightly negative performance over one year, while the FCPR Isatis Capital Vie & Retraite, created already five years ago, made gains over one year. as over three years (with respectively +5.7% and +19.3%). Aiming for the long term will also allow you to benefit from the advantageous taxation of life insurance after eight years of ownership, which then provides for a deduction on the earnings withdrawn, of 4,600 euros per year in the case of a single person (double for a couple). Below this period, the capital gains withdrawn will be taxed, without any deduction, at 12.8%. A shame, since these same funds, but held directly, are exempt from all taxes after five years of detention!


Life insurance: beware of the various fees deducted from your contract

Our selection of unlisted funds accessible via life insurance

(1) The maximum limit is €1 million per contract, all unlisted funds combined. (2) When subscription dates are indicated, they are only indicative, the fund being able to close the collection earlier. (3) The insurer has decided to limit marketing to 2022. (4) Within the limit of the budget available from Generali. (5) Except on Linxea Avenir 2, where there are no exit fees. (6) Since the launch in September 2019. NC: not communicated. NP: not relevant, the FCPR is of too recent creation. © Capital

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