CUNA Mutual to Sell Its Australia Operation
After a 41 year run, CUNA Mutual Group is pulling its operations out of Australia through a sale to an international insurance firm based down under.
CUNA Mutual Group said it has reached an agreement in principle to sell its Australian business operations to QBE Insurance Group. QBE Australia is a member of the QBE Insurance Group, Australia's largest international insurance and reinsurance group and one of the top 25 global insurers and reinsurers as measured by gross written premium, according to CUNA Mutual. QBE Australia has more than 50 offices spanning each state and territory in Australia.
Patzner said another motive for selling its operations in Australia was because of the decline in credit unions in the country over the past 10 to 15 years. According to WOCCU, there were 111 credit unions with a combined $42 million in assets and more than 3.4 million members in Australia as of 2009.
About a year ago, Patzner said CUNA Mutual started looking at "others who could do it better" in Australia and began discussions with QBE last summer. Both companies have signed the contracts and the closing is scheduled for March 31. On closing day, QBE will own CUNA Mutual's life insurance plans and motor and home plans will renew through the firm. Almost all of the 84 employees will be offered employment with QBE, Patzner said.