NU Online News Service, Oct. 9, 3:15 p.m. – Clarica Life Insurance Company-U.S., the U.S. subsidiary of Clarica Life Insurance Company, based in Waterloo, Ontario, says it will buy most of Ash Brokerage Corporation, Wayne, Ind. The deal also includes Ash’s affiliate, AFH Financial Consortium, Inc.

The agreement is expected to close within the next 30 days, subject to regulatory approvals. Clarica Life will hold 85% of the company, and Tim Ash, president of Ash Brokerage, will hold the remaining 15%.

Ash Brokerage assists independent marketing companies and agents in placing customized life insurance cases, while AFH Financial is a wholesale broker-dealer providing support for sales of variable life insurance and annuity products, 401(k) plans and mutual funds.

Ash Brokerage has 62 employees and 20,000 producer relationships across the U.S.

Charles Grover, president and chief executive officer of Clarica’s U.S. operation, says the acquisition of Ash, a leader in the impaired-risk marketplace, will give his company access to a deeper product line, coupled with strong growth opportunities.

“We’re very excited about building a relationship with Ash,” says Grover. “It’s an outstanding opportunity for Clarica-U.S. to differentiate itself and advance our strategy of targeted growth and becoming the elite company of choice for the independent marketplace. It also presents an opportunity for Clarica-U.S. to increase top-line revenue and net income.”

The purchase price of approximately $25 million (U.S.) will be financed from internal resources. The acquisition is expected to be slightly accretive to Clarica’s earnings in 2002, the company says.