Desjardins Group back on the acquisition track

By Hubert Roy | January 04 2018 07:00AM

Guy Cormier | Photo: Normand Huberdeau

Guy Cormier acknowledges that Desjardins Group has been less active in acquisitions since he became CEO 1.5 years ago. 2018 should be a different story.

The cooperative has started to make some major moves, notably the sale of Western Financial, the launch of its virtual bank and fintech investment in partnership with the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. “Our organic growth was 7 per cent to 10 per cent depending on the business line. We achieved $20 billion to $25 billion per year in organic growth in the last two years, he observes.

Desjardins Group has enough capital for now, he adds. “The growth of a business is not always linear. It may happen in stages. We are eyeing assets everywhere,” he said.

Four acquisition sectors are targeted: In the lead is P&C insurance, followed by wealth management. Then comes the payment world, and possible acquisitions of businesses in the fintech and insurtech spheres.