Hub International Expands in British Columbia; Barton Unit Purchases H & H Insurance Services Ltd.

 

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 Add Title:  Hub International Expands in British Columbia; Barton Unit Purchases H & H Insurance Services Ltd.
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 Location:  Chicago
 Date:    2003-03-24  
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Hub International Limited (NYSE:HBG)(TSX:HBG), announced today that its largest Canadian operation, Barton Insurance Brokers Ltd. (Barton) of Chilliwack, British Columbia, has purchased the assets of H & H Insurance Services Ltd. (H & H) of Chetwynd, BC.

H & H, with annual revenue of approximately US$320,000 (Cdn$500,000), arranges primarily auto coverage and personal insurance. H & H's operations will be folded in to Barton.

Discussing the transaction, R. Craig Barton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Barton and President of Hub's Canadian Operations, said that the H & H purchase was a step in the continuing expansion of Hub's British Columbia base. He added, "This acquisition is a good strategic fit for Hub. It complements Barton's existing book of business and bolsters Hub's strength in the region."

This is Hub's third acquisition in 2003. In 2002 they made eight acquisitions, including that of Fifth Third Insurance Services, which created an 11th hub operation, based in Indiana.

Headquartered in Chicago, IL, Hub International is a leading North American insurance brokerage that has grown rapidly since its formation in 1998 through mergers, acquisitions and organic growth. It provides a broad array of property and casualty, life and health, employee benefits, investment and risk management products and services through offices located in the United States and Canada. Hub International's strategy is to expand its market share in the highly fragmented insurance brokerage industry by acquiring quality firms in key geographic regions that focus on servicing middle-market commercial businesses. In addition, Hub plans to leverage its decentralized approach, differentiate its service, and capitalize on its scale to provide broader product offerings to its clients through multiple distribution channels. Hub International currently has eleven large "hub" brokerages that have significant market presence in their geographic regions in the U.S. and Canada. Each hub provides insurance brokerage services and manages the various other Hub International offices in its territory. The hub brokerages are responsible for growth through sales, service and fold-in acquisitions. The hub offices report to the head office which, in addition to monitoring the activity of each hub, retains responsibility for identifying and acquiring additional hub brokerages.

This press release may contain forward-looking statements which reflect our current views with respect to future events and financial performance. These forward-looking statements relate, among other things, to our plans and objectives for future operations and are subject to uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from such statements. These uncertainties and other factors include, but are not limited to, risks associated with implementing our business strategies, identifying and consummating acquisitions, integrating acquired brokerages, attaining greater market share, developing and implementing effective information technology systems, recruiting and retaining qualified employees, fluctuations in the premiums charged by insurance companies with corresponding fluctuations in our premium-based revenue, any loss of services of key executives, industry consolidation, increased competition in the industry, fluctuations in the demand for insurance products and the passage of new legislation subjecting our business to regulation in jurisdictions where we operate. We caution readers not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Additional information regarding these risks and other factors that could cause Hub International's actual results to differ materially from our expectations is contained in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Except as otherwise required by federal securities laws, Hub International undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

 In the following box below, please add a contact information.
CONTACT:
Director of Mergers and Acquisitions
Michael P. Sabanos, 212/338-2273
msabanos@hubinternational.com
or
For additional information about
Barton Insurance Brokers Ltd. Contact:
R. Craig Barton, 604/703-7088
rcbarton@barton.ca                                                                               
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 SOURCE :   Hub International Limited