Canadian Underwriter

Employee-owned brokerage makes third acquisition of the year

November 14, 2019   by Jason Contant

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Employee-owned independent insurance brokerage Storm Insurance Group announced Wednesday its acquisition of Quebec brokerage Axxium Assurance Inc., effective Nov. 1.

“This opportunity now makes us one of Canada’s few national independent insurance brokers with full operations in all four regions – Atlantic, Quebec, Ontario and West,” said Storm president Jamie Reid in a press release.

Axxium is Dartmouth, N.S.-based Storm’s first acquisition in Quebec, and a strategic achievement towards its Vision 2020 strategy. With the announcement that Storm’s employee ownership group has acquired Montreal-based Axxium, Storm has now acquired three brokerages in 2019. On Jan. 1, it acquired Burlington, Ont.-based Wardell Insurance. Four months later, it bought Sheppard Insurance Service of Edmonton.

Former owner of Axxium, Sébastien Vaval, and the Axxium team will join Storm. Vaval, who helped establish Axxium in 2009, is a former board member of Quebec’s brokers association, the Regroupement des cabinets de courtage d’assurance du Québec, and actively involved in insurance industry relations. “Sébastien’s entrepreneurial drive and ambition will be an asset to our group as we expand in Quebec and throughout the rest of Canada,” Reid said.

Timothy Branson, vice president of Storm’s eastern region, will lead the Quebec brokerage in partnership with Vaval. Together, they’ll focus on targeted organic growth strategy, new distribution channels and further acquisitions.

Since 2014, Storm has opened offices in Ontario and Alberta and made a number of other acquisitions in both provinces including Robert C. Davis Insurance of Waterdown, Ont. and Robinson Insurance of Edmonton. With the acquisition of Axxium, the group now has 95 employees.

Storm Insurance Group includes: A.P. Reid Insurance (Ontario/Atlantic), Agile Underwriting Solutions (managing general agency), Axxium Assurance (Quebec), (e-digital insurance), MyGroup Home and Auto Insurance (Group) and Sheppard Insurance (West).

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