Willis Group announces major $18bn merger

The international broker agreed to a deal that would combine two industry powerhouses and result in projected revenue of $8.2 billion.

Risk Management News


International insurance broker Willis Group Holdings announced today that it has reached an agreement to merge with professional services group Towers Watson.

The combined company, to be called Willis Towers Watson, is valued at $18 billion and will bring in projected revenues of $8.2 billion. Willis is also anticipating $100 million to $125 million in savings as a result of the deal, to be realized within three years of its closure.

Under terms of the agreement, Willis Chairman James McCann will serve as chairman of the new company while Towers Watson Chairman and Chief Executive John Haley will serve as CEO. Willis CEO Dominic Casserley will take over as president and deputy CEO.

The Willis Towers Watson board will consist of six directors from each company.

Combined, the new firm will employ more than 39,000 workers in 120 countries – a key selling point for both companies looking to increase their global footprint.

“The rationale for the merger is powerful – at one stroke, the combination fast-tracks each company’s growth strategy and offers a truly compelling value proposition to our clients,” Casserley said in a statement.

Haley added that the move will strengthen Willis’ broking and risk advisory capabilities by leveraging Towers Watsons’ “robust set of analytics and product solutions.”

The all-stock deal – under which Willis will own 50.1% of the company – is expected to close by the end of the year.

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