1913 to 1946
Andrew Agencies Ltd. was established in 1913 as a general insurance and travel agency by Robert Andrew. The company represented the Miniota Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Co. that was purchased by the Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Co. in 1923 and the Cunard Steamship Lines selling steamship tickets. The original office was located at 131 Nelson St. W., Virden, Manitoba in the rear of Yewdall’s Tailor Shop (the current Sears building). Eventually located to the second floor at 219 Nelson St. W. Ted Treliving operated a barbershop on the lower level.
1946 to 1961
Vern Andrew, upon return from overseas in October 1945, worked for his father, Robert Andrew. Following his father’s death in 1946, Vern purchased the business, which he operated until his death on April 30th, 1961. In 1946 Vern purchased the office building at 219 Nelson St. W. from George Gabel and moved the office to street level. Renovations to the Interior in 1958 changed the façade from two entries to one. The office door was never locked during business hours even at coffee break. Vern would return from coffee to find clients sitting in the office waiting for him. Out of office calls to premises were done after hours. During high school, Vern’s son, Bob, worked part time with his father typing policies and doing the mail.
1961 to 1996
In 1956 Bob Andrew began full time employment at the agency. Following his father’s (Vern) death, Bob purchased the business operating it for the next 35 years. Andrew Agencies was incorporated in 1964. In 1978 Bob built a new office at 297 7th Avenue S. Virden, Manitoba. His wife Marjorie became part of the increasing staff. By the early 1990s, the office was fully automated for insurance, travel and investments. Bob and Marjorie retired in 1996 and 1998 respectively.
1993 to Present
In 1993, the fourth generation of Andrews continued the operation of Andrew Agencies Ltd. when Bob’s sons Todd (deceased), Scott and Blair purchased the business. Jacy Whyte partnered into the business in 1997, followed in 2000 by Brock Andrew (Bob’s son). In 2007, Clint Smith and Robert Eslinger became partners.
Here are some of the changes that have taken place under the current Management Team and Ownership Group:
- 1993 – Purchased Andrew Agencies Ltd. (AALTD) (Virden, Miniota, Oak Lake and Elkhorn office locations in Manitoba)
- 1994 – AALTD purchased an insurance brokerage operation in McAuley.
- 1995 – AALTD purchased insurance brokerage operation in Moosomin, SK. which included offices in Rocanville and Maryfield, SK.
- 1997 – The AALTD ownership group became a partner in Custom Software Solutions Inc. (CSSI).
- 2000 – RFNOW Inc. Data and Voice Communications was founded. The partners in Andrew Agencies Ltd required an efficient effective and reliable broadband solution to network the rural office locations of their Brokerage operation.
- 2001 – AALTD purchased insurance brokerage operation in Carlyle, SK.
- 2006 – AALTD purchased brokerage operation in Ste. Rose Du Lac, MB.
- 2008 – AALTD purchased brokerage operation in Russell, MB and St. Lazare, MB.
- 2010 – AALTD purchased brokerage operation in Weyburn, SK.
- 2011 – AALTD purchased brokerage operations in Lampman, SK and Whitewood, SK.
- 2012 – AALTD purchased brokerage operation in Redvers, SK.
- 2013 – AALTD purchased brokerage operations in Manitoba, including Boissevain, Oak Lake, Reston, Hamiota, and Brandon.
- 2017 – AALTD purchased brokerage operations in Airdrie, AB and Winnipeg, MB at Garden City Shopping Centre, Seasons of Tuxedo, and St. James.
- Andrew Agencies Ltd. operates 19 locations in south-western Manitoba, south-eastern Saskatchewan, and Airdrie, Alberta, employing 125+ staff.
- CSSI – Head Office located in Virden, MB with Regional Sales Offices in Edmonton and Toronto, employs 100 staff. Services Insurance Broker and Carrier customers from coast to coast in Canada.
- RFNOW Inc. – Head Office in Virden, MB, employs 30 staff. Currently has 1500 Internet subscribers in south-western Manitoba and south-eastern Saskatchewan.
Andrew Agencies Ltd. continues to grow and credits the success and longevity to the generations of loyal clients and a dedicated and loyal staff.