Updating Intact Financial Corp., Carfinco Financial and Yamana Gold

Article Excerpt

INTACT FINANCIAL CORP. $90.64 (Toronto symbol IFC; TSINetwork Rating: Speculative) (416-341- 1464; www.intactfc.com; Shares outstanding: 131.5 million; Market cap: $11.9 billion; Dividend yield: 2.3%) is expanding in Western Canada by purchasing Canadian Direct Insurance from Canadian Western Bank (symbol CWB on Toronto) for $197 million. Canadian Direct offers home, auto and travel insurance, mainly in Alberta and B.C. The acquisition also lets Intact expand its higherprofit- margin direct-to-consumer distribution channel. Direct distribution lets consumers get initial online quotes at any time and then use extended call centre hours to speak with—and purchase policies from— licensed insurance representatives. In conjunction with this purchase, Intact plans to merge its Grey Power brand into its belairdirect brand to reduce the number of banners it offers. However, it will continue to offer Grey Power’s discount rates to drivers over the age of 50. Canadian Direct looks like a great fit for Intact, which has successfully integrated a number of acquisitions in the last few…

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