Mercer is buying Thomsons Online Benefits, the benefits, software and communications business to enable it to offer its Darwin platform proposition to its clients.
The acquisition, which is for an undisclosed fee, will give Mercer client companies access to Thomsons’ Darwin benefits administration, communication and market intelligence service.
Thomsons was founded by CEO Michael Whitfield and managing director Chris Bruce in 1999 and was valued at around £100m by a private equity firm investing in the company in 2013.
Mercer president and CEO Julio Portalatin says: “The combination of Thomsons’ Darwin technology with Mercer aligns to the growing demand from multinational employers to offer a common yet locally tailored employee benefits platform that delivers the latest in creative engagement, modern design, analytic insights and administrative efficiency and support,” said. “The acquisition also drives future growth in local markets across the world where Thomsons and Mercer are already well established by putting technology at the heart of addressing employer and employee needs.”
Whitfield says: “Over the last several years, as we have grown closer to Mercer it has become increasingly clear that we have a fantastic opportunity to continue the Thomsons’ success story of the last 16 years as part of Mercer, with our Darwin technology helping to power future growth and business transformation.
“The acquisition by Mercer will provide our clients with world class broking and consulting, wherever they need it, as well as offering the ability to continue to work with Thomsons as an agnostic technology solution. It further allows us to scale the development of Darwin faster globally, as well as locally. I am also delighted about the career and personal development opportunities that this move offers to Thomsons’ employees all over the world.”
Bruce says: “Now global organizations have a trusted partner who has the end-to-end benefits offering and experience essential to support creating a healthier, happier and more engaged workforce.
“Technology is changing every function of HR and the greatest opportunity to have an impact is in benefits.”
Mercer president, health and wealth businesses Jacques Goulet says: “Acquiring Thomsons will affirm Mercer’s commitment to anticipating clients’ rapidly evolving needs and investing in the best solutions that help them gain competitive edge and win employee hearts and minds. Thomsons will align and significantly enhance our technology capabilities and we are delighted to make our highly successful partnership permanent for a best-in-class employee experience.”