July 19, 2018 -
Zurich Canada has appointed John Thain, a 25-year veteran of the travel insurance industry, as Vice President, Travel, Accident & Sickness. He will be responsible for launching personal leisure travel, business travel accident and supporting accident and sickness products in Canada. He is based in Toronto and reports to Greg Irvine, head of Specialty Products for Canada.
Before joining Zurich, Thain held numerous roles as an independent consultant, underwriter and program administrator. At Assurant Canada, he was responsible for the strategic direction of a portfolio of inclusive credit card and related voluntary insurance products in Canada.
“We are very excited that John has joined Zurich Canada to help us launch an accident and sickness underwriting practice, including personal travel insurance,” said David Levinson, CEO of Zurich Canada. “With John’s experience and deep knowledge of the market, he is well equipped to lead Zurich’s travel insurance business while we continue to strengthen our customer and broker relationships across the country.”
Zurich Canada expects to begin selling personal travel products by the start of 2019.
The global travel insurance market has grown from $12 billion in 2012 to $18 billion in 2016. In Canada, travel medical insurance is critical, because government-provided healthcare insurance stops at the border.
Zurich already has a strong global portfolio of travel insurance and assistance services under the umbrella of specialist provider Cover-More, which Zurich acquired in 2017. Zurich accelerated the growth of Cover-More in 2018 by agreeing to acquire the businesses operating under the Travel Ace and Universal Assistance brands. The transaction positions Cover-More as the leader in travel assistance solutions in Latin America.
Thain holds an Honours Bachelor of Mathematics (B. Math) degree from the University of Waterloo with majors in Actuarial Science and Computer Science, in addition to a Fellowship in the Canadian Institute of Actuaries. He is a past president of the Travel Health Insurance Association of Canada.