Applied Systems Acquires Insurecom in U.K.

By | August 14, 2013

University Park, Ill.-based insurance software provider Applied Systems Inc. has acquired Insurecom, a software and connectivity solutions company focused on the insurance industry in the United Kingdom.

Under the deal announced on Wednesday Insurecom will operate as Applied Systems UK. The acquisition enables Applied Systems to establish company-owned operations in the U.K. and deliver greater service and new products to the marketplace, Applied Systems said.

“I will say that one of the primary reasons we decided to go to the U.K. is we have a bunch of customers that are already international,” Reid French, CEO of Applied Systems, told Insurance Journal.

Some of those customers are in the U.S. as well as Canada, where Applied Systems has been pushing into recently, such as Willis, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. and HUB International, French said, adding, “they had an interest in us becoming international over time to better to support them.”

The company didn’t disclose the terms of the deal, and French declined to shed much light on how it was structured or how much it was worth.

“I can tell you that we 100 percent bought out the entity,” he said.

Insurecom has more than 500 agency customers, and 4,000 software licenses in play, according to French.

“It’s a good deal for us and we think it’s a good deal for the U.K. market,” he said.

It’s the second purchase Applied Systems has made over the last few months. In May Applied Systems announced it completed its acquisition of the property/casualty business of IVANS, which has been providing products for insurance data exchange and integration between insurance carriers and agencies for more than 30 years. Applied Systems has had a long partnership with IVANS and assisted in the development of IVANS’ open platform solutions utilized throughout the P/C insurance industry.

As with IVANS, Insurecom was an Applied Systems business partner. Insurecom worked with Applied Systems for more than 10 years, and has been providing software for the insurance industry in the U.K. for more than 14 years. Insurecom is the exclusive distributor of Applied TAM to insurance brokerages in the UK. The agency and broker management system has a reported user base of more than 100,000 insurance agents and brokers across the U.K., U.S. and Canada.

French said it’s not the company’s plan to stick to buying partners, but doing so gives the purchaser a deeper insight than might otherwise be had.

“Philosophically, I will tell you that when you do acquisitions, if you know the company really well it ultimately helps you be successful with it,” he said.

Jeff Purdy, senior vice president of international operations for Applied Systems, will oversee Applied Systems UK, working directly with the Insurecom management team. In 2012 Purdy was tapped as senior vice president and general manager of Applied Systems Canada.

In 2012 Applied Systems made several big steps into Canada, opening its first data center outside of the U.S. to provide additional storage for brokers in Canada. That year Applied Systems also acquired Compu-Quote Inc., a Canadian comparative insurance rating company.

Insurecom’s website by early Wednesday had already been changed to reflect the purchase, welcoming visitors with the message “INSURECOM IS NOW APPLIED” and inviting them to visit the Applied website.

The company said it plans to begin introducing its additional insurance software products currently used in the U.S. and Canada to the market to further automate the insurance lifecycle in the U.K.

Applied Systems has products in the U.S. market that have not been introduced in the U.K., a product called Mobile Producer, for example, as well as Applied TAM advances that haven’t been released abroad.

“I think it’s a good win for our customer base,” French said, adding that the big point people should take away from the deal is “the market of insurance is becoming more global.”

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