Verisk Acquires Canadian Property Intelligence Provider Opta

The acquisition aims to expand Verisk’s geographical footprint and accelerate customers’ innovation agendas.

(Image credit: Dimitry Anikin/Unsplash.)

Verisk (Jersey City) has announced that it has acquired Opta, a Markham, Ontario-based property intelligence and innovative technology solutions. Verisk characterizes the acquisition as further expanding its footprint in the Canadian market.

Greg McCutcheon, President, Opta.

With its roots in the Canadian Underwriter’s Association, founded in 1883, Opta boasts more physical construction information and site-specific risk intelligence than any other Canadian organization. Calling itself Canada’s most comprehensive property intelligence and loss control services provider, Opta says it is the only organization in Canada that regularly gathers and validates data through real-time dialogue and ongoing research, Opta is also Canada’s leading source for community fire protection data through its Fire Underwriter Survey (FUS).

“From the focus on building the insurance ecosystem to the passion for empowering customers with data-driven insights, it was clear that we have a strong cultural bond with Verisk,” comments Greg McCutcheon, president, Opta. “Our combined deep domain expertise, advanced technology and unique data assets will be incredibly advantageous for our customers and help the market accelerate the use of data and insights as a competitive advantage.”

Opta’s industry position and proprietary database in Canada align well with Verisk’s position in the marketplace and provides the opportunity for long-term product harmonization, according to Verisk. The American vendor characterizes Opta’s trajectory and industry role as sharing striking similarities with Verisk, despite the former’s deeper historical roots. About three years after Verisk’s founding in 1971, Opta began focusing on providing advice and information to a broader range of clients in the insurance industry from insurers and brokers to governments and risk managers across a wide range of services and topics.

Mark Anquillare, COO and Group President, Verisk.

“Verisk and Opta share similar roots, an intense focus on our customers’ needs, and a passion to serve as key partners that anticipate the needs of a critical industry,” comment Mark Anquillare, COO and group president, Verisk. “Together, we’ll accelerate our customers’ innovation agendas and create news ways to add value to their business and the insurance ecosystem. We are pleased to welcome the Opta team to the Verisk family.”

In addition to advancing Verisk’s market expansion into Canada, Opta joining Verisk will leverage complementary technology and services that enable customers, such as insurers and other financial services companies, to better inform their decision making and increase the efficiency of their operations, according to a Verisk statement. Opta joins Verisk’s range of solutions for rating, underwriting, policy administration, claims, exposure management and reinsurance.

Opta is currently owned by SCM Insurance Services, which is a Warburg Pincus and TorQuest Partners portfolio company. Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC acted as a financial advisor to SCM Co-Invest Limited Partnership. Stikeman Elliott LLP served as legal advisor to SCM Co-Invest Limited Partnership in connection with the transaction, and Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP served as legal advisor to Verisk in connection with the transaction.

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Anthony R. O’Donnell // Anthony O'Donnell is Executive Editor of Insurance Innovation Reporter. For nearly two decades, he has been an observer and commentator on the use of information technology in the insurance industry, following industry trends and writing about the use of IT across all sectors of the insurance industry. He can be reached at AnthODonnell@IIReporter.com or (503) 936-2803.

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