The APRIL group announced April 23 that it is expanding its presence in the Canadian market with its acquisition of Benecaid, a Toronto-based managing general underwriter and third party administrator specializing in group health insurance for SMEs.

Based in Lyon, France, the APRIL group has been active in the Canadian property & casualty (P&C) insurance sector market for more than10 years. With the acquisition of Benecaid, the APRIL group says it now has a "strengthened foothold in Canada, one of APRIL’s principal markets outside France.”

Benecaid has 53 staff members and serves over 22,000 clients, which translates into around $93 million ($CDN) in premiums.

Management team remains unchanged

APRIL acquired a 93 per cent equity interest in Benecaid. The company's management team, which remains unchanged, holds the remaining 7 per cent. The transaction was financed with the group's cash.

APRIL says that acquiring Benecaid will enable it to continue expanding and diversifying its business in Canada beyond the P&C insurance market.

Complements existing business activities

"By acquiring Benecaid, the group is continuing its expansion in a growing and priority business line for APRIL. Canada is already one of the main contributing countries to our gross margin outside France; we are boosting our positioning there thanks to a profitable company recognised for the quality of its expertise, and which complements our existing activities. This transaction is fully in line with our sustainable growth strategy, combining a local foothold in health insurance with the global expansion of our expertise," said Emmanuel Morandini, APRIL group CEO.