With four new partnerships announced July 6, commercial brokerage Navacord now has offices in Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.
“We are now coast to coast,” Navacord executive chairman T. Marshall Sadd said Monday in an interview.
Cooke Insurance Group, which has nine offices, is the first Atlantic Canada partner of Navacord, a group of companies formed in 2014 by Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management Inc. and Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers.
The other three partners announced Monday are:
Hull Group, based at Bay and Wellington Streets in Toronto’s financial district;
Blanket Insurance, based in central Edmonton; and
Regina-based Smiths’ Insurance.
Although the deals are acquisitions, Navacord refers to them as partnerships because the partners typically buy into Navacord, with Navacord taking a majority interest in the brokerages.
“The model is, you get to buy into our business, you get to keep your brand, you get to execute an internal succession plan — whether it is the next generation of family who wants to stay in the business and run it, or it’s a team that helped you build the business over the last 15 to 25 years,” said Sadd. “It’s resonating with some really strong entrepreneurial brokers in Canada.”
Cooke Insurance Group places commercial marine, First Nations, contractors, agriculture, transportation, aerospace, tourism and hospitality among others.
Established in 1972, Cooke has four offices in New Brunswick (Moncton, Saint John, Rexton and Fredericton), two in Nova Scotia (Halifax and Sydney) and three in Prince Edward Island (Charlottetown, Summerside and Alberton).
For its part, the Hull Group places cyber, directors and officer liability and errors and omissions, among others.
“They bring a deeper expertise in technology, in high net worth clients,” Sadd said Monday of Hull Group.
In Alberta, Blanket places personal lines as well as business including legal expense and course of construction, among others. The Navacord deal does not include Blanket’s home warranty business, Sadd told Canadian Underwriter.
Closing the deals took a bit longer than normal because of the pandemic.
“A lot of the due diligence and negotiations were done over video conferencing,” Sadd said. “We would say the deals took a little bit longer because we just needed to understand the book of business and how it would be affected by COVID – in the short term, medium term and the long term – so it definitely slowed things down. But working remotely, working through Zoom meetings or video conferencing, it was effective.”