Willis Acquires 100 Percent of Argentina Business
Wholly Owned Subsidiary Renamed Willis Argentina S.A.
London, UK September 29, 2009 - Willis Group Holdings (NYSE:WSH), the global
insurance broker, today announced that it has completed the purchase of 100 percent of the
share capital of Herzfeld Willis S.A. (Retail operation) and Willis S.A. (Reinsurance
operation) in Argentina. The business will now be known as Willis Argentina S.A. Terms of
the transaction were not disclosed.
Willis established a presence in Argentina in 1999 by acquiring 20 percent of Herzfeld &
Levy, a leading national insurance broker, to become Herzfeld Willis, and setting up Willis
S.A., a reinsurance company in which the Group took a 60 percent stake, with the remaining
40 percent owned by two private individual investors. In 2000, Willis acquired a further 20
percent stake in Herzfeld Willis and then in 2004, became the majority shareholder of
Herzfeld Willis by acquiring a further 20 percent stake to move to an overall 60 percent
holding. The latest deal sees Willis increase its stake to 100 percent in both the retail and
the reinsurance operations.
Eugenio Paschoal, Chief Executive Officer for Willis Latin America, said: “We have taken
full ownership of Willis Argentina because we see excellent growth prospects in this country
and are committed to becoming the leading broker there. We have ambitious expansion
plans for Latin America as a whole and a strong foothold in Argentina will help us maintain
the double-digit growth momentum that we have built up in the region.”
Fabiana Scalone, Chief Executive Officer of Willis Argentina S.A., said: “Together with
Willis, we have developed a dynamic hub of insurance and reinsurance broking expertise in
Argentina. By coming fully under the Willis umbrella, we believe that our clients will continue
to benefit from high-touch local service, backed by the extensive global resources and
expertise of one of the world’s leading broker power houses.”
Willis Argentina has 130 Associates located in its office in Buenos Aires. All told, the global
broker has 26 offices throughout Latin America in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia,
Mexico, Peru and Venezuela.
Willis Group Holdings Limited is a leading global insurance broker, developing and
delivering professional insurance, reinsurance, risk management, financial and human
resource consulting and actuarial services to corporations, public entities and institutions
around the world. Willis has more than 400 offices in nearly 120 countries, with a global
team of approximately 20,000 Associates serving clients in some 190 countries. Additional
information on Willis may be found at www.willis.com.