Jul 21, 2009
VANCOUVER, BC, and GUELPH, ON, July 21 /CNW/ - Vancity and The Co-operators today announced an agreement for the sale, pending final approvals, of Vancity Insurance Services Limited (VISL), Vancity's subsidiary for home, auto, travel and business insurance. VISL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Vancity that provides insurance through 17 retail branches in Greater Vancouver and Victoria, as well as an inbound call centre. The VISL portfolio includes approximately 28,000 residential, 48,000 auto, 10,000 travel and 2,000 commercial insurance policies. Under the terms of the agreement, The Co-operators subsidiary, Federated Agencies Limited, will acquire VISL, including all its service locations on September 1, 2009. VISL customers will be notified of the change in ownership, and their insurance coverage will remain in effect with no changes to their premiums or coverage for the current term of their policies. VISL retail locations will begin to operate under The Co-operators brand September 2. Vancity's approximately 100 insurance staff will receive offers of employment from Federated Agencies Limited, a subsidiary of The Co-operators. The purchase of VISL will significantly expand The Co-operators presence in British Columbia, where it currently has 24 agent offices. Vancity will continue to offer life, creditor and title insurance as part of its overall financial services offering. Squamish Insurance Services is not part of the purchase agreement and will continue operations as usual. "This is a positive opportunity for our business, our membership, customers and staff. The Co-operators aligns to our values and has the right experience and expertise to serve our members," said Tamara Vrooman, President and CEO of Vancity. "We will return better value for our members and communities through this sale than we would by continuing to operate the business ourselves. The proceeds will be reinvested to further enhance member service and support our employees with improved systems, processes and training at the credit union." "This acquisition fits well with our core business of insurance and supports our strategic growth strategy by expanding our presence and strengthening our agency distribution system in the province," said Kathy Bardswick, President and CEO of The Co-operators. "This was a natural fit for both our and Vancity's employees, customers, members and stakeholders, as the two Canadian-owned co-operatives have closely aligned values, cultures and commitment to communities." About The Co-operators Based in Guelph, Ontario, The Co-operators is a group of Canadian companies offering home, auto, life, group, travel, commercial and farm insurance, as well as investment products. The Co-operators Group Limited is a 100 per cent Canadian-owned co-operative with assets of more than $7 billion. It is owned by a group of Canadian co-operatives, credit union centrals and like-minded organizations. The Co-operators is well known for its community involvement, and is listed among the "50 Best Employers in Canada." About Vancity (Vancouver City Savings Credit Union) Vancity is Canada's largest credit union, with $14.5 billion in assets, more than 400,000 members, and 60 branches throughout Greater Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Victoria and Squamish. Vancity is guided by a commitment to improving the quality of life in the communities where we live and work.
For further information: Leonard Sharman, The Co-operators, 1-877-795-7272 ext. 2707; Stephanie Thatcher, Vancity, (778) 837-0394