Hub International Limited (NYSE: HBG and TSX: HBG) today announced it has acquired, for an undisclosed amount of cash, the stock of Sondheim & Laughlin, Inc.(Sondheim), an Iselin, New Jersey specialist in arranging auto physical damage and liability insurance for the public auto and limousine industry. Sondheim, founded in 1875, has annual revenue of approximately $2 million. The firm will remain in Iselin and become part of the Company's New York City hub, Kaye Group Inc.
Sondheim's principals are Robert Laughlin, President, who is retiring, and George Hansen, Vice President. Mr. Hansen, with Sondheim for 20 years, will become a Vice President of Kaye Group, reporting to Howard Nenner, First Vice President. Mr. Nenner joined Kaye Group in September 2002 when Kaye acquired C.S. Nenner, Inc., a Bordentown, New Jersey specialist in placing transportation and warehousing coverage for trucking companies.
Kaye Group is one of 11 regional "hubs" that make up Hub International Limited, one of the largest insurance brokerages in North America. Hub International's growth strategy includes the acquisition of large entrepreneurial brokerages that service primarily middle market clients, and the expansion of these regional hubs through fold-in acquisitions of smaller, local firms. Since January 1, 2003 Hub has made six fold-in acquisitions, including Sondheim.
"We are very pleased to expand our transportation insurance specialty business and to bolster our impact in New Jersey by adding the strength of the Sondheim firm and George Hansen's expertise to the existing capability of Howard Nenner's group," said Martin P. Hughes, Hub Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "This advances a major component of our strategy: broadening and deepening our specialty offerings to middle market businesses - in this case in the very busy northeastern commercial corridor."
Hub International has established strong access to insurance markets in the United States and Canada, enabling its customers to benefit from both expanded access and coverage choices through the Hub network. As new brokerages are added to the organization, clients of these brokerages gain the same access and resources that have helped Hub International become a leading competitor in its markets.
Headquartered in Chicago, IL, Hub International is a leading North American insurance brokerage that 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.
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.