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Marsh McLennan ‘excited’ about Honan as shopping spree continues 

Marsh McLennan President and CEO John Doyle says the company remains on the lookout for acquisitions following deals last year that included buying Australia and New Zealand broker Honan Insurance Group. 

“We’re very excited about Honan in Australia,” he told a conference call after releasing fourth-quarter and full-year earnings. “It gives us an anchor platform deeper into the middle market, in what’s a very important and attractive market for us.” 

Marsh McLennan completed the purchase of Melbourne-based Honan in November after the deal was announced in August. 

Mr Doyle says the global group continues to seek “high-performing businesses, well-led businesses in attractive markets” following one of its most active years for mergers and acquisitions.  

Marsh McLennan’s net income was up 23% to $US3.76 billion ($5.74 billion) last year, with a strong fourth quarter contributing to the result. Revenue grew 10% to $US22.74 billion ($34.72 billion), and Mr Doyle says the business had a 16th consecutive year of reported margin expansion. 

“All of our businesses delivered, generating excellent revenue and earnings growth,” he said. “We executed on our strategic initiatives, invested in high-quality acquisitions, made the largest dividend increase in 25 years, and made meaningful share repurchases.” 

Risk and insurance services revenue grew 11% to $US14.1 billion ($21.5 billion), with Marsh up 8% and Guy Carpenter 12%. 

In the fourth quarter, Marsh international operations produced underlying revenue growth of 7%, including 10% in Asia-Pacific.  

Full-year consulting revenue grew 7% to $US8.7 billion ($21.5 billion), with stronger contributions from the Mercer and Oliver Wyman businesses.  

“We are well positioned for 2024,” Mr Doyle said. The company expects “mid-single-digit or better” underlying revenue growth, margin expansion and strong adjusted earnings per share growth.