February 1, 2004 by Canadian Underwriter
TD Bank’s insurance arm, Meloche Monnex, has acquired the Canadian personal lines book of Liberty Mutual, a subsidiary of the Boston-based Liberty Group. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Meloche Monnex, which sells personal home and auto insurance as TD Insurance Home and Auto as well as under its own name, will as a result of the deal become the largest direct writer of property and casualty insurance in Canada. Overall, the insurer will rank among the top four personal lines carriers in Canada.
Liberty Mutual’s personal lines book stood at $390 million in written premiums last year. Meloche Monnex will now write $1.4 billion in annual premiums based on 1.3 million policyholders. The acquisition also boosts Meloche Monnex’s affinity business by adding 25 new university alumni/professional organizations and 400 employer groups or other associations.
The nearly 800 staff members of Liberty Mutual will remain with the acquired operation, bringing Meloche Monnex’s personnel up to 2,700. “This acquisition will solidify Meloche Monnex’s position as an insurance leader through the addition of a broad-based clientele while strengthening our employer group marketshare,” says Meloche Monnex CEO Alain Thibault. “In addition, it will reinforce our existing presence in strategic markets, particularly Ontario. Liberty Mutual’s expertise will also complement that of our own personnel.”
Paul Condrin, Liberty Mutual Group vice president, says the company will retain its Canadian commercial lines business through Liberty International Underwriters, but is focusing its personal lines energies on the U.S. market. “Liberty Mutual’s North American personal lines p&c growth strategy is primarily focused on our U.S. operations, where we have the scale to operate most efficiently for our customers – something we do not have to adequately address the complexity of the Canadian insurance market.” Subject to regulatory approval, the sale is expected to close in April.