It looks like Webster Financial Corp. of Connecticut is not done buying insurance agencies there.
The Waterbury banking company, which already owns three - two of which it bought this year - is scouting for more.
But $9 billion asset Webster will not buy just to increase volume, said John Queirolo, president and chief executive officer of its new Webster Insurance unit. "We're looking for agencies that have a strategic purpose," he said.
A couple of possibilities, he said, would be agencies that add a construction insurance capability to Webster's commercial property and casualty insurance line or more life and health lines, such as employee benefits and long-term care.
Mr. Queirolo said he would also like to expand his municipal insurance lines.
Webster's buying spree in Connecticut began in 1998, with the acquisition of Dammon Insurance Associates of Westport. In February of this year it bought Levine Cos. of Waterford, and last month it bought Follis, Wylie & Lane of Hamden.
The Levine deal gives Webster a presence in eastern Connecticut as well as investment administration.
"They do 401(k) plan administration, which we didn't do, and they sell mutual funds, which we didn't do," Mr. Queirolo said.
Follis, Wylie & Lane, meanwhile, gave Webster more expertise in contractor insurance.
Together, the three agencies - which will officially become part of Webster Insurance in July - had revenues of $14.1 million in 1999.
Mr. Queirolo said that he expects to boost the trio's revenues to about $17 million in 2000, but that little of the growth will come from expansion into bank distribution, which it is testing at its 115 branches.
In selling insurance through banks "we're still developing strategies that I'd like to think will be disciplined," Mr. Queirolo said
Included in the pilot are term life, business property and casualty lines, and accidental death.
"It's too early to tell if we're going to be successful," Mr. Queirolo said. "This is a very long-term deal."