Canadian Underwriter

Canadian P&C brokerage M&A explodes in late 2022

October 13, 2022   by Jason Contant

Merger and acquisition business concept

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P&C brokerage merger and acquisition activity in Canada remains strong and healthy, as evidenced by the number of deals announced in just the past couple of weeks.

Those deals involve brokerages that include Westland Insurance Group, BrokerLink, Western Financial Group, StoneRidge Insurance Brokers, and Ing & McKee (a Navacord brokerage). On the carrier side, Trisura Group acquired Sovereign Insurance’s surety business.

Brokerage M&A deals include acquisition of three P&C brokerages by Westland: Arrow Insurance Agency, Emsland & Associates Insurance, and IBMG Canada Inc., all effective Oct. 1.

Arrow Insurance, which offers home, auto, commercial and farm insurance, is Westland’s first location in the city of Fort St. John, B.C., said Westland in a press release.

Emsland & Associates adds location in Kamloops, B.C. for Westland, and offers auto (including commercial), home and personal property, business and travel medical insurance.

Toronto-based IBMG Canada “increases Westland’s presence in the strategically important Greater Toronto Area.” It offers personal (including home, auto and life insurance), commercial (retail, manufacturing, industrial, auto fleets, garage and corporate risks) and financial services (key person insurance, buy-sell insurance, employee benefits programs and critical illness).

Women holding a sign with 'M&A' written on it Labkouski

Also effective Oct. 1, BrokerLink bought two Ontario brokerages: L&M Dallaire Insurance Ltd. and Cryderman Insurance Brokers Ltd.

L&M Dallaire Insurance provides home, auto and business insurance to customers in northern Ontario’s Kapuskasing community and surrounding areas. Cryderman Insurance offers personal and commercial insurance to Chatham-area customers in southwestern Ontario.

SIB Corp., operating as StoneRidge Insurance Brokers, also expanded its Ontario presence by acquiring Deerborne Insurance Inc., announced in early October. The full-service brokerage services personal and commercial clients throughout the Greater Toronto Area.

“This transaction demonstrates our focus on becoming a national broker,” said Ted Puccini, SIB’s president and CEO, in a statement.

SIB has completed six transactions so far in 2022, with another three transactions expected to close in the next 45 days.

In western Canada, Western Financial Group acquired its first Edmonton brokerage with the purchase of Sadler Insurance. The full-service independent insurance broker provides personal, commercial and financial services products across Alberta. This includes home, renters, recreational, motorcycle, business interruption, commercial auto and property, life and disability, and travel insurance, among others.

“This great partnership made sense for both groups with aligned business values and a priority on community relationships and social responsibility,” Western Financial said in a press release.

Navacord broker partner Ing & McKee added a fellow Alberta brokerage to its ranks in a deal announced last month. With locations in Rocky Mountain House and Caroline, Hunley Insurance provides home, auto, commercial, construction, farm, oilfield, special events liability, and travel insurance.

“Coming together under one banner will create enhanced service supported by national resources and increased market access,” Ing & McKee said in a statement. “The addition of Hunley strengthens Navacord’s P&C roster as well as their presence in western Canada.”

On the carrier side, Trisura Group Ltd. acquired Sovereign General Insurance Company’s surety business in Canada in a transaction announced Sept. 30. The deal provides Trisura with access to a portfolio of contract, commercial and developer surety accounts, which in 2021 produced an annual premium of more than $16 million, Trisura reported.

“The acquisition strengthens Trisura’s surety operation in Canada,” Trisura said in a release. “Sovereign Insurance exits the surety business in Canada to focus more closely on its core commercial and specialty lines business.”

Richard A. Grant, senior vice president of surety for Trisura Canada, added the acquisition will “significantly enhance Trisura’s position in the developer and mid-market contract surety segments in Canada.”


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