VenGrowth Private Equity Partners Assists Petplan in Establishing SecuriCan General Insurance Company
WINNIPEG, March 30, 2005 – Until very recently all of Canada’s pet
insurance providers have operated as brokers, with third party Canadian
insurance companies operating as their underwriters. Petplan, Canada’s leading
and oldest pet health insurance broker, was no exception — previously
employing the underwriting services of Sovereign General Insurance Company, a
member of The Co-operators group of companies. Wanting to assume full control
over its future and profitability, Petplan has now successfully completed the
task of capitalizing itself as a Federally regulated insurance company under
the governance and guidance of the Office of the Superintendent of Financial
To achieve full autonomy, Petplan and parent company HED Insurance have
established a new insurance company that specializes in underwriting pet
insurance programs — SecuriCan General Insurance Company (“SecuriCan”). The
name SecuriCan was chosen as the operating insurance company name, while
Petplan has been retained as the company’s core branded insurance product.
SecuriCan is now licensed to do business across Canada — receiving its final
provincial licence (Quebec) in December 2004.
To assist in this undertaking, Petplan and HED presented the proposal to
the Canadian venture capital market, successfully raising $7.5 million from
VenGrowth Private Equity Partners, one of Canada’s premier private equity
managers with over $1 billion in assets under management on behalf of
individual and institutional investors.
“Petplan and HED represent the types of companies we like to partner
with — established, forward-looking businesses with a strong, sustainable
market niche,” said Graham McBride, Managing General Partner of VenGrowth.
“The partnership with HED in establishing SecuriCan will assist both companies
in advancing their core business and we see the potential for excellent future
“It has been a huge investment of resources, but now with our Federal
license we have complete control over our own destiny” said Randy Valpy,
President and Chief Operating Officer of SecuriCan. “Over the last three and
half years our business has almost doubled in size and now as Canada’s only
licensed pet insurance underwriting company, the organization is extremely
well-positioned to capitalize on market trends and opportunities for growth.”
Statistics show one in three pets will experience a new illness or injury
requiring veterinary care this year, with one in six pets sustaining two or
more illnesses or injuries. Pet insurance, which follows a model not unlike
dental insurance, enables pet owners to take advantage of the highest
standards of veterinary medicine. Even though today less than one percent of
pet owners in Canada actually subscribe to pet insurance, in other countries
with more developed pet health insurance industries, participation is
considerably higher. By comparison, the United Kingdom has 15 percent of its
pets insured and Sweden has the highest percentage of insured dogs and cats in
the world with 42 percent penetration. This bodes well for SecuriCan and the
industry across Canada in the immediate future.
Since 1989 Canadian pet owners have been able to purchase pet insurance,
and Petplan was the first to offer pet insurance in the country. Today Petplan
remains Canada’s leading pet insurance provider. In addition to their own
brand Petplan, SecuriCan also underwrites pet insurance programs for other
companies including a new partnership with President’s Choice Financial.
PC Financial Pet Insurance launched on March 31, 2005. More information can be
retrieved from www.pcinsurance.ca.
About HED Insurance
Established in 1982, HED Insurance and Risk Services is a multi-faceted
organization. HED operates as risk management consultants, commercial and
personal lines insurance brokers, employee benefits consultants and group
administrators. Above all, HED’s insurance professionals are risk negotiators
who buy optimum insurance coverage for their clients from responsive and
qualified insurance companies. HED’s overall mission is to make its clients
aware of their risks, so that they can take the appropriate action, giving
clients the piece of mind to concentrate on their day to day business. As Art
Elias, President of HED, said, “There will be greater benefits for our clients
if we help them with understanding and management of risk, rather than just
sell them insurance.” For more information, please visit www.hedinc.com.
About VenGrowth Private Equity Partners Inc.
With over $1 billion in assets under management, VenGrowth is Canada’s
largest private equity and venture capital firm managing both retail and
institutional assets. Since 1982, VenGrowth’s accomplished private equity
managers have invested over $1.1 billion in 180 companies, building a strong
track record of successful portfolio transactions. These investments have been
made on behalf of over 180,000 individual investors and leading pension funds,
banks, insurance companies and family foundations. Portfolio companies benefit
from VenGrowth’s substantial experience, resources, and hands-on investment
style. VenGrowth’s offices are located in Toronto (Corporate Headquarters) and
Ottawa. For more information, please visit www.vengrowth.com.
About Petplan Insurance
Petplan Insurance’s vision is to promote a better quality of life for
Canadian pet owners and their cats and dogs, through a suite of insurance
products that provide for optimal pet health care. Established in 1989,
Petplan Insurance is Canada’s leading pet health insurance company.
Headquartered in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the company has representation from coast
to coast. Petplan Canada is affiliated with Petplan U.K., the largest pet
insurance company in the world. For more information please visit
About SecuriCan General Insurance Company
SecuriCan became a federally licensed property and casualty insurance
company in April 2004. SecuriCan specializes in underwriting pet insurance
programs, currently underwriting Petplan Insurance, CAA Pet Insurance,
Save-on-More Pet Insurance (for Overwaitea Foods), and President’s Choice
Financial Pet Insurance. SecuriCan is a subsidiary of HED Insurance, one of
the largest Canadian-owned insurance brokers, consultants, and group program