Royal & SunAlliance to acquire Canadian Northern Shield Insurance

    Acquisition to bolster the R&SA intermediated business in Canada

    TORONTO, Oct. 17 /CNW/ - The Royal & SunAlliance Canada Group (R&SA), a
leading property, automobile and commercial insurer, announced today that it
has entered into an agreement to purchase all of the shares of Canadian
Northern Shield Insurance Company (CNS) from The CUMIS Group Limited for
approximately $75 million payable in cash. This acquisition will make R&SA the
sixth largest P&C insurance company in Canada and the market leader in British
    The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals.
    R&SA Canada President & CEO Rowan Saunders describes the acquisition as
an opportunity to strengthen R&SA while investing in the intermediated
insurance market.
    "This is a significant acquisition for R&SA and strengthens our position
in British Columbia," said Saunders. "The addition of CNS to the R&SA group of
companies enables us to further diversify our business and continue to support
brokers and their customers with greater capacity and global underwriting
expertise. I look forward to working closely with the CNS team of employees
and brokers to build the business in B.C."
    CNS is a leading intermediated insurer in British Columbia with annual
premiums of approximately $164 million in 2006. The company offers a full
range of products including personal property, commercial and private
automobile and is represented by more than 200 brokers servicing customers
across the province.
    Kenn Lalonde, President & CEO, The CUMIS Group Limited commented: "The
sale of Canadian Northern Shield will enable CUMIS to better fulfill its
strategic mandate of serving credit unions and their members, and support the
growth of the credit union system in Canada. CNS is a strong and successful
company, however since its customer base extends beyond credit unions, it is
not fully aligned with CUMIS' core purpose."

    About The CUMIS Group Limited

    The CUMIS Group Limited (CUMIS) markets a diverse portfolio of insurance
and financial products and other services to Canadian credit unions, caisses
populaires and their members. The organization helps its customers grow their
businesses and strengthen their relationships with members through its line of
individual life, credit and property and casualty insurance and retirement
services products. Its principal companies are CUMIS Life Insurance Company
and CUMIS General Insurance Company. CUMIS also has a 50 per cent interest in
Credential Financial Inc.

    About Royal & SunAlliance Canada

    The Royal & SunAlliance Canada group includes Roins Financial Services
Limited, Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada, Quebec Assurance
Company, Johnson Inc., Western Assurance Company, Ascentus Insurance Ltd. and
is part of Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Group plc. The Royal & SunAlliance
Canada group employs approximately 2,500 people and is represented by a large
network of insurance brokers across the country. In 2006, the Canadian Group
wrote $1.5 billion in direct premiums with assets exceeding $4.9 billion.
Internationally, Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Group plc employs about 24,000
people and transacts business in more than 130 countries with assets of
approximately $40 billion.

For further information:

For further information: Lisa Milburn, Royal & SunAlliance, (416)
366-7600 ext. 2790, or (416) 317-2321 (cell),; Colleen Vecsi, The CUMIS Group Limited,
(905) 631-4892, (905) 399-4651 (cell),

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