Crop Insurance – Wells Fargo Exits The Market

    Wells Fargo & Company (WFC) has entered into an agreement with Zurich American Insurance Company (ZAIC), a subsidiary of Zurich Insurance Group, to sell its crop insurance business, Rural Community Insurance Services (RCIS), and its subsidiary Rural Community Insurance Company (RCIC). The transaction is expected to close by the end of Q1-2016.

    “The sale of our long standing crop insurance business allows us to focus on and strengthen our distribution businesses, which account for approximately two-thirds of our Insurance revenue,” said Laura Schupbach, head of Wells Fargo Insurance. “We have tremendous opportunity to provide our consumer and commercial customers the insurance and risk management solutions they need and we continue to invest in the business.”

    Wells Fargo Insurance serves consumer and commercial customers through its two distribution businesses, Insurance Brokerage and Consulting (IBC) and Personal and Small Business Insurance (PSBI). IBC provides middle market, large corporate and high net worth clients with property and casualty, professional risk, employee benefits, private risk solutions and targeted insurance programs to specialized industries. PSBI provides retail and small business customers with access to personal and business insurance products including auto, home, umbrella, renters and small business insurance.

    As one of the nation’s largest crop insurance providers, RCIS offers federal crop insurance programs, including multi-peril and other private crop insurance products. With a national network of more than 4,000 agents, RCIS conducts business in all 50 U.S. states and is a member of National Crop Insurance Services and the Crop Insurance and Reinsurance Bureau, Inc.

    Zurich is a leading multi-line insurer that offers a wide range of general insurance and life insurance products and services to individuals, small businesses, and mid-sized and large companies, including multinational corporations, in more than 170 countries.

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    Zurich has been doing business in the U.S. for over a hundred years, and is a top five commercial property-casualty insurance provider serving global corporate, large corporate, middle market, specialties and programs sectors through the individual member companies of Zurich in North America, including ZAIC. Since 2000, ZAIC has been a reinsurance provider to RCIS and currently assumes 25 percent of RCIS’ retained premiums through a quota share contract.

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    “Wells Fargo and Zurich have a long standing history of working together and we are confident they will provide great service and support to our agriculture customers and RCIS team members,” said Schupbach.

    Under the agreement, the estimated purchase price is between $675 million – $1.05 billion. Additional financial details related to the transaction, including the amount of expected gain to Wells Fargo, were not disclosed. RCIS’s annual operating results are not material to Wells Fargo.

    Wells Fargo Securities served as exclusive financial advisor to Wells Fargo Insurance in connection with the transaction, which does not include the Wells Fargo Insurance Crop Agency.

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