Narrator: The Canadian P&C marketplace is transforming. In the last 12 months, there have been a number of large transactions, including Intact Financial Corporation acquiring AXA Canada and Desjardins acquiring Western Financial Group. Economical, Canada’s largest mutual P&C insurer announced it intends to become the first Canadian P&C company to demutualize. Talks of new rules and regulations and new entrants to the market have dominated headlines. ILSTV asked Louis Gagnon, President of Intact Insurance, what it’s like to be in the Canadian P&C industry right now, and the impact his company’s acquisition of AXA Canada will have.
Louis Gagnon: Very exciting and very dynamic. Seriously. I think it’s a time that it’s really neat to be in that industry. It’s an industry that has not seen a lot of movement when you look at it compared to many others in the past, like life [insurance.] Life has seen a lot of changes in the last 10 to 20 years with demutualization, with a lot of acquisition from one company to another. In P&C, it has been, I would say, a stable environment. I think there’s a lot of good, dynamic positioning right now that will create an even more exciting industry to be in.
The Intact-AXA transaction, it makes us very proud to bring back in Canadian hands – first we brought back in Canadian hands when we went from ING to Intact two and a half years ago – the leader of the industry and now we’re acquiring a foreign-owned organization and bringing it back in Canadian hands and this is I think a key element of now the P&C leader is a strong, stable Canadian organization.
Narrator: With Intact as an all-Canadian company, Louis says it’s not only good for Canadians but brokers, too.
Louis Gagnon: I think it should be taken in consideration in the broker interest in our organization. Also, knowing when a client has a claim, it’s going to be settled in Canada, by Canadian people, close in their community because we’re going to keep our outstanding claims service that exists right now with people across the country in small regions, in rural and semi-rural areas. I think you have to be a Canadian company to offer that kind of service that is really in line with what the Canadian wants and where the Canadian population is.