InsureLine inks national deal with Walmart

B.C.-BASED insurance brokerage and franchise operator InsureLine has inked a deal with Walmart Canada, enabling its franchisees to open locations inside the store’s locations across the country.

Aly Kanji, president and ceo of InsureLine, told Thompson’s the first franchisee to open a Walmart location is the former Infinity Insurance Services, based in Port Coquitlam, B.C. Infinity, now operating under the InsureLine brand, has a second Walmart location in Delta, B.C.

Mr. Kanji said brokerages could benefit immensely from having a Walmart location.

“The biggest benefit is the amazing amount of foot traffic that you get,” he said.

“Being inside of Walmart you get access to this phenomenal traffic and opportunity to write business.”

He said operating alongside such a well-known brand gives brokers added credibility.

Mr. Kanji’s former employer, Sussex Insurance, used to operate inside Walmart stores and still has locations in Loblaws’ Superstore outlets.

“The other element is there is the perception from buyers that just being inside Walmart you are a low-cost provider and I think that transposes to the brokerage — overall it’s a great opportunity.”

InsureLine was established in late 2015 and started franchising in early 2016.

Since then it has opened 20 locations in B.C. and Alberta and it is currently closing in on deals in Ontario.

Ultimately it wants to operate in all Canadian provinces.

Currently InsureLine is licensed to sell insurance in the Yukon, B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.

“The goal is to build a national footprint and we think we can become a significant player in a short period of time,” Mr. Kanji said.

He said its franchisees are attracted to the business model because it allows them to remain independent operators and grow their business by tapping into InsureLine’s tech-nology and marketing offerings.

“The biggest thing is brokers want to stay in the business and don’t want to . . . sell,” he said. “Whatever hard work they want to put into their business is going to be theirs and not someone else’s.”