Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 20th 2013 Contents BG30 | AFTER HOURS
BUSINESS GUARDIAN www.guardian.co.tt JUNE 2013 • WEEK THREE
Gulf Insurance Ltd is now a subsidiary of Suri-
name-based Assuria Group.
On June 7, company officials, regulators and clients
came together at the Hyatt Regency Trinidad hotel
on Dock Road in Port-of-Spain to toast the successful
completion of the acquisition.
"We signed a share purchase agreement on February
14, 2013, which is Valentine s Day. On Valentine s
Day, you usually express to dear friends how much
you care for them. I think the signing of the share
purchase agreement on Valentine s Day symbolises
our promise that we will take good care of the employ-
ees and clients of Gulf. Still, we had to wait for the
approval of the Central Banks of T&T and Suriname,"
said Stephen Smit, chief executive officer at the
He was convinced there is a bright future ahead
for Gulf and Assuria in T&T and other territories in
the Caribbean. Smit based his optimism on the recent
Moody s Investors Services report which stated that
the economies of Suriname and T&T are the most
stable in the region.
Assuria is Suriname s largest insurance company
and sold various products through three operating
The group s financial strength is bolstered by two
investment companies under the parent brand: one
which invests in local companies and is a major share-
holder in almost all companies listed on the Suriname
Stock Exchange. The other focuses its investments
on the international capital market.
It was only six years ago that Assuria began explor-
ing ambitions to operate outside Suriname s borders.
In 2011, the company changed its strategic goal to
have insurance interest in at least two countries
outside Suriname within five years.
One year later, Assuria started operations in Guyana
with the establishment of two new companies: Assuria
General (GY) Inc and Assuria Life (GY) Inc.
T&T was also on Assuria s radar that year, however,
company officials did not want to copy the greenfield
model adopted in Guyana and instead opted to buy
It emerged that the assets T&T-based of Gulf
Insurance were to be placed on the market and on
the advice of auditing firm Ernest and Young, Assuria
acted swiftly to make a bid by the October 1, (2012)
"Assuria owns 49 per cent of the shares of De
Surinaamsche bank, the largest bank in the country.
With this bank, Assuria has a joint venture in real
estate development. Assuria is ISO certified, ensuring
service to our clients according to the highest inter-
"Gulf has a well-known brand. So we won t change
the name of the company. We will only add that Gulf
is a member of the Assuria Group. The logo changed
slightly. Gulf s strength lies in the quality of its staff
and its agents. They have expressed their commitment
and will continue to deliver their excellent services.
Gulf has a range of good products, which the company
will continue to sell," Smit said.
He added, "You may wonder what Assuria will
bring to Gulf. Well, first of all, new capital. We have
already done that and Gulf now has a healthy balance
sheet which meets the standards of the Central Bank
of T&T. We are working on a strategic plan to develop
the company. Good corporate governance is very
important to us.
"We are to build on our success by becoming a
major player in the insurance industry of T&T; creating
good relationships with the brokers and the local
insurance companies; using modern technology to
bring the service level to a higher standard; and being
a responsible partner in the community."
Assuria Group toasts Gulf
Insurance Ltd's acquisition
story and photos
Carl Hiralal, left,
Central Bank of
T&T, with Patricia
Central Bank of
Healy Jr, chairman,
Assuria Group, and
with Dr Antonie
T&T, and Marc
State Oil of
David J Dulal-
Republic Bank Ltd,
with Ray A
McAL Group and
Angela Lee Loy,
Solutions, with John
Dianne Aquing, left,
with Richalene Siu
BHP Billiton, with
Links Archive June 19th 2013 June 21st 2013 Navigation Previous Page Next Page