Canadian Underwriter

BrokerLink doubles size in Atlantic Canada, buys brokerages in Ontario and Alberta

August 9, 2021   by Jason Contant

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BrokerLink has doubled its presence in Atlantic Canada and is now one of the largest brokerages on the east coast following its acquisition of Archway Insurance and South Coast Insurance Agency Limited.

BrokerLink, a subsidiary of Intact Financial Corporation, announced Thursday it had acquired Archway Insurance and its subsidiaries Upstairs Finance Inc. and C.D. Anderson Insurance Ltd. (collectively, Archway Insurance), as well as South Coast Insurance.

BrokerLink also acquired new locations in Ontario and Alberta, welcoming employees of Doug Honeyford Insurance Inc. in Sudbury, Ont. and Lakeside Insurance Ltd. in Sylvan Lake, Alta. to its ranks. Honeyford Insurance offers auto, home, commercial, life and health, and travel insurance, among others; Lakeside Insurance provides auto, home, business and recreational vehicle insurance.

Archway Insurance CEO Michael Stack and president Gina McFetridge join the senior management group at BrokerLink, and employees of Archway Insurance are also now part of the BrokerLink team, the large brokerage said in a press release Thursday. “Joining BrokerLink supports out goals to offer a progressive work environment, with benefits and career paths that attract and retain employees,” McFetridge said.

Through these Atlantic Canada acquisitions, BrokerLink now has over 65 locations and more than 400 employees in the region. Nationally, the brokerage has over 3,000 employees.

Founded in Yarmouth, N.S. in 1985, Archway grew from a single location to serve over 30 communities across Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. The Canadian brokerage offers customers home, auto, and recreational insurance, among others.

For its part, Newfoundland-based South Coast Insurance has locations across the province, offering its customers home, auto, commercial, marine and life insurance since 1978. The employees of South Coast Insurance will now add their expertise to the BrokerLink team. Kelly Hickman, president of South Coast Insurance, said in the release that joining BrokerLink “offers access to new technology and resources necessary to continue providing high-quality service to customers, grow our business, and offer employee development opportunities.”

BrokerLink president Joe D’Annunzio said that through the acquisition of South Coast Insurance, BrokerLink is increasing its service in Marystown and Corner Brook, Nfld., and serving additional communities in Newfoundland, including Bonavista, Springdale and St. Lawrence.

Archway Insurance, South Coast Insurance, Honeyford Insurance and Lakeside Insurance locations will continue to operate as usual, with the same team members serving customers, BrokerLink reported. Rebranding to BrokerLink will take place over a gradual transition period.

In addition to the four new acquisitions, BrokerLink has invested significantly and expanded into more than 20 communities in Ontario over the past year. It also acquired well-established brokerages in several Alberta communities.

“We are always willing to speak with broker principals who are considering future options for their brokerage,” D’Annunzio said. “It’s not an easy decision to make, but our model is such that we align with brokerages that share our values, which includes a commitment to providing outstanding customer service.”


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