Canadian Underwriter

Gallagher buys Canadian executive search firm

July 18, 2022   by Jason Contant

HR manager holding a job interview with applicant

Print this page Share

In an age of non-stop brokerage-to-brokerage M&A, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. has taken a different approach with its latest acquisition.

Rolling Meadows, Ill.-based Gallagher today announced acquisition of Toronto-based Four Corners Group Inc., an executive search firm operating throughout Canada and the U.S.

Founded in 2007, Four Corners Group serves clients in diverse industries, with focus in business services, technology, fast-moving consumer goods, manufacturing, retail, supply chain/logistics, real estate, financial services, healthcare, academic, not-for-profits, associations, marketing services and professional services.

President, founder and managing partner Kelly Farrell, and her team, will remain in their current location under direction of Melanie Jeannotte, CEO of Gallagher’s benefit and HR consulting division in Canada.

“Four Corners Group is a strong and reputable executive search practice that will further expand and strengthen our global talent and leadership advisory offerings,” J. Patrick Gallagher, Jr., the brokerage’s chairman, president and CEO, said in a press release. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Insuramore, a London, U.K.-based insurance and marketing consultant, recently ranked Gallagher as the world’s third largest brokerage, with global 2021 revenues of $3.5 billion and a 5.7% market share. Gallagher provides services in about 130 countries globally.

Gallagher’s no stranger to M&A. In May 2021, the brokerage announced an agreement to acquire certain WTW reinsurance, specialty and retail brokerage operations as part of a proposed ‘regulatory remedy’ for the proposed Aon-WTW megamerger (which never went through). But two months later, Gallagher said the US$3.57 billion deal with WTW had been nixed.

Aon and WTW also called off their proposed US$30 billion combination agreement in July 2021 following an ‘impasse’ with the U.S. Department of Justice. In a court filing, the justice department said the deal would “substantially lessen competition” in risk broking for large corporate customers.

Gallagher also purchased a consulting firm and a P&C managing general agency over the past year. In March of this year, it acquired Montreal-based PCI-Perrault Consulting Inc. (doing business as PCI Compensation Consulting). The firm specializes in total compensation and governance for organizations throughout Canada.

In June 2021, the brokerage acquired Excess Underwriting, a Markham, Ont.-based MGA and Lloyd’s broker specializing in commercial and residential property and liability, and errors & omissions coverage.


Feature image by