As an economy grows, the need for insurance also increases. For instance, consider an average household, as the income grows, the more expensive possessions they will own. The more they own, the more they have to protect and hence more people are likely to turn to insurance brokers to protect them. Consequently, insurance brokers’ business models are evolving with the world’s largest insurance brokerage being Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc. with revenue worth 1,402 crores USD.
INSURANCE BROKERAGE MARKET
The insurance brokerage market size has the potential to grow by USD 19.56 billion during 2020-2024, and the market’s growth momentum will accelerate during this period. The increasing growth rate can be attributed to the increase in opportunities for healthcare insurance, accidental insurance, and many others. Also, the rise of different enterprises is boosting the demand for insurance products in the country.
THE GIANT ACQUISITION
On 9th of March, 2020, the acquisition of the world’s third largest insurance broker, Willis Watson Towers, by the second largest insurance brokers, Aon, would create the world’s largest insurance broker with equity value worth 80 billion dollars at a time when insurers are facing rising claims and new threats from the coronavirus and climate change. The new combined company will continue with the name of Aon and will keep its headquarters in London. Under the deal, the two largest entities will combine and focus on the core areas of risk, retirement and health.
“Our combined firm will accelerate innovation on behalf of clients and be better able to deliver more value to all stakeholders. And while we will be bigger, yes, that’s not what this transaction is about. This is about better,” said Greg Case, the CEO of Aon. But undoubtedly, it will get bigger.
“The combination of Willis Towers Watson and Aon is a natural next step in our journey to better serve our clients in the areas of people, risk and capital. This transaction accelerates the journey by providing our combined teams the opportunity to drive innovation more quickly and deliver more value.” said John Haley, the CEO of Willis Towers Watson.
Following the amalgamation, Aon will be led by Greg Case, current CEO of Aon, and Christa Davies, the current chief financial officer of Aon. The current CEO and director of Willis Towers Watson, John Haley, will take up the role of executive chairman. The new board of directors will comprise equal members from Aon and Willis Towers Watson’s present directors. The combined firm is expected to have 95,000 employees globally.
After the deal of 30 billion dollars, Aon shareholders will own about 63% of the combined firm, and Willis Towers Watson shareholders will own about 37%. The deal was unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both the firms and is subject to shareholder and other approvals, including regulatory.
IMPACT OF ACQUISITION
The merger of Aon and Willis Towers Watson will make Aon even better for their clients leaving a great impact on the other insurance brokers. Marsh & McLennan Cos., which was the world’s first largest insurance broker have now become the second. This declaration stated that the new firm will combine “diverse colleague experience” and “shared values” to drive distinctive outcomes for clients. It also claimed that this merger will create an organization “more relevant and responsive to client needs.”
After the merger agreement was announced, Fitzsimmons Insurance agency commented -“Another blockbuster deal in the global insurance broking market, seeing brokers ranked two and three combine together to become the largest global insurance broker, knocking Marsh & McLennan Cos off its current perch.” The merger would lead to explosion in the value of independent private equity-backed brokers in the United Kingdom according to experts.
THE FUTURE ACTION PLAN OF AON
Aon anticipates that the combined industry will provide annual pre-tax synergies and other cost reductions of 800 million dollars by the third full year of combination, whereby allowing the firm to continue significant investment in innovation and growth.
Willis Towers Watson and Aon also predicts a savings of 267 million dollars in the first full year of the combination, reaching 600 million in the second full year, with the full 800 million achieved in the third full year, 2023. Free cash flow accretion is expected to break even in the second full year of the combination with free cash flow accretion of more than 10% after full realization of synergies.