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The Complete Package

After spending 14 years growing Axis Insurance Managers Inc., Tony Davis has no plans to stop building the business

Company: Axis Insurance Managers Inc. 

President: Tony Davis 

By continuously adding top-notch talent to our organization, we have been able to bring Axis Insurance Managers Inc. from a small, three-person storefront business to a 50-plus-person company with our name prominently placed on the top of the building.

Axis Insurance Managers Inc., started out as a family-run business on the west side of Vancouver called Winram Insurance Ltd. Winram transacted personal lines and a small amount of commercial business. I had always wanted to run a small, independent business, so I bought that company in 1999—and changed the name to Axis Insurance Managers Inc. in 2005—and began to build it up. We immediately moved the main office downtown and opened a second office in North Vancouver to house our Autoplan license. Then we increased the commercial lines business, so that it now encompasses roughly 80% of our client base. Over the years, there have been a number of satellite companies, where individuals had an interest in their own business and Axis was the major shareholder. We have brought most of these partner companies in-house, but we still have roughly four independent companies that run under this model. A few years ago, we joined UNiBA Partners international brokerage network, and through it, we are able to do business in 120 different countries around the world.

We have recently expanded into the life insurance side, with Axis Life. One of our staff has a flair for this area, and he is doing quite well writing life insurance and benefits package business on the back of our regular property and casualty book. With our recent move to a new and larger space right in the downtown core of Vancouver, we are able to continue to expand our business and bring on more talented staff. Our first expansion is into the area of VIP homeowners’ insurance. We had the good fortune to bring on a broker who is well versed in working and connecting with wealthy individuals. This means we are now able to meet another of our goals: to offer a full service package to our clients, both property and casualty business insurance, and VIP homeowners’ insurance.

We want to be aggressive; we want to grow. We would love to expand into Ontario and increase our toe-hold in Alberta. But any growth must be sustainable. We offer quality insurance and risk management services for quality clients, and must ensure that we continue to offer that superior product going forward. We do not want to be all things to all people; we must continue to add value to everything we touch.

 — as told to Laura Kupcis

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Copyright 2013 Rogers Publishing Ltd. This article first appeared in the November 2013 edition of Canadian Insurance Top Broker magazine

Transcontinental Media G.P.