HUB International has been carrying out multiple acquisitions in Canada and the United States with a clear goal in mind – “to ensure that we get the best talent available,” says Tina Osen, President, HUB International Canada.
The Insurance and Investment Journal spoke with Osen a few days after the announcement that HUB was acquiring property & casualty insurance brokerage firm Integro Canada in early September.
Acquisitions are an important part of the company’s strategy. The company is a large player in the Canadian P&C brokerage and in the life insurance sector through its managing general agency HUB Financial.
The company has ambitious goals. Osen says HUB intends to double its size in Canada within the next five years, in each sector. Osen points to three reasons behind HUB’s desire for acquisitions.
The first is that this strategy allows the company to bring in new talent. It also makes it possible to grow the company in terms of scale. The acquisitions also allow HUB to position itself in niches that the company could not have developed otherwise.
While acquisitions are an important part of HUB’s strategy, their goal is primarily to enable the company to generate organic growth over time, she explains. “We will continue to achieve organic growth. It’s very successful for us,” she says.
Osen says she has strong financial backing to achieve HUB’s Canadian expansion goals. “Members of the board are supportive when we find a good strategic fit. There’s no cap on what I can do.”
Cultural fit is the most important criteria for HUB in making an acquisition. “We would not buy a business just to buy it. We want people to be excited to be part of our culture…It’s really about the talent and the skills you get, along with the cultural fit.”
Room to grow
As for HUB’s geographical footprint in Canada, Osen says the company is present in all provinces, although stronger in some than others. She says that Saskatchewan and Alberta are markets where she believes the company could expand.
She underlines that HUB intends to grow in Canada while remaining independent. The firm’s independence allows it to offer its clients all the options available in the market, which she believes is “the best value proposition.”