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Westland acquires brokerages in Ontario, Alberta


January 7, 2022   by Jason Contant


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Westland Insurance has announced its first brokerage acquisitions of 2022 — Bunnell Hitchon Insurance Brokers in Ontario, and Rigby Insurance in Alberta.

Bunnell Hitchon, in Brantford and Milton, Ont., was founded in 1890 and offers a wide range of personal and commercial insurance, including home, auto, boat, motorcycle, commercial auto, farm and contractors’ insurance, among others. For its part, Calgary-based Rigby Insurance has been providing home, auto, life, and commercial insurance since 1965.

The Bunnell Hitchon deal represents a “tremendous cornerstone acquisition for us in Ontario, a market fundamental to our growth strategy,” Jamie Lyons, president and chief operating officer of Westland, said in a press release Thursday. Rigby Insurance, like Westland, is a second-generation family business “strategically complementary” to Westland’s overall operations, Lyons added.

With these acquisitions, Westland now has more than 2,200 employees coast-to-coast across Canada. As one of Canada’s largest independent property and casualty brokerages, Westland trades $2.5 billion of insurance premium.

Westland acquired about 20 brokerages last year. Most recently, it announced Dec. 7 the acquisition of Winnipeg’s Reider Insurance, which offers home, auto, travel, business, seasonal/cottage and boat insurance.


The previous day, Westland acquired Church Eaton Insurance of Calgary and Hook Lafrance Insurance in Regina. Lyons said Church Eaton brings “niche commercial expertise and specialist capabilities,” while Hook Lafrance provides expertise in all segments of the P&C insurance business.

On Tuesday, another large brokerage, Western Financial Group, said it had acquired a full-service brokerage in southern Ontario. Wiesner offers personal, commercial and financial services products, with a specialization in commercial products and programs, including employee benefits.

 

Feature image by iStock.com/mikdam