Discover which Aviva Group companies have been transacting insurance business in Italy over the past 150 years.

Country History

Norwich Union Italy prospectus

Norwich Union Italy prospectus, 1880s


On June 22, the Northern Assurance Company, later part of the Commercial Union Assurance Company, opens an agency in Florence, under Thomas Waller and Dr Wilsoni.


L’Abeille Bourguignonne, later part of Commercial Union, enters the Italian market but finds it difficult to generate business.


On June 11, the Citizen Assurance Corporation, later part of the General Accident Fire & Life Assurance Corporation, starts to transact Italian life business.


On September 18, the North British & Mercantile Insurance Company, later part of Commercial Union, is granted permission to transact business in the Italian Kingdom. The agent for the company, William Wingfield Bonnin, places a deposit of 100,000 lire to operate a general fire agency there.


North British & Mercantile appoints Charles Fenzi agent for Florence. On February 10, Mr Fenzi undertakes his first business for the company.


On January 18, North British & Mercantile appoints the Leopold Brothers as agents for Genoa.


On March 12, Commercial Union appoints Messrs Mechescher & Gottleib of Vienna to undertake fire reinsurance business in Italy.

Norwich Union Italy prospectus

Norwich Union Italy prospectus, 1892


North British & Mercantile ceases direct business in Italy.


North British & Mercantile ceases all operations in Italy.


On December 12, the Norwich Union Fire Insurance Society appoints Evan Mackenzie as reinsurance agent for Genoa.


By this date, the South British Insurance Company, later part of General Accident, is also represented in Italy by Evan Mackenzie, whose address is Piazza T Lorenzo 15. On October 16, Commercial Union appoints Mackenzie as fire agent for Genoa.


Commercial Union records a premium income for Italy of £58. On June 11, the Norwich Union Life Insurance Society appoints Baron Selig S Kusel as agent for Milan.


Norwich Union Life expands its operations in Italy appointing Messrs E Leir and Cavaliere E. Biletta agent for Turin; Mr A R Franz agent for Rome; Messrs Pedevilla, Conzi and Preti agent for Genoa; Messrs A Morsto & Co agent for Naples; Edwardo de Zuccato agent for Venice; Eugenia Dammas agent for Spezzia and Giuseppe Appelius agent for Leghorn.


On March 11, Baron Kusel signs a new agreement with Norwich Union Life which promises him an allowance of £900 per annum for expenses accrued in running the Italian business. The allowance is dependant on the Baron achieving new business worth a minimum of £100,000.


The Palatine Insurance Company, later part of Commercial Union, appoints an agent in Italy for the first time. Commercial Union has achieved an annual premium income in Italy of £4,815 by this date. Norwich Union establishes its main agency at Palazzo Vechietti, Florence.


Norwich Union Fire cancels its agreement with Evan MacKenzie as reinsurance agent.


Norwich & London Accident Insurance Association, later part of the Norwich Union Fire, appoints Crespi Fabbri & Co manager for Italian accident business.


Norwich Union Life now also employs the services of Crespi, Fabbri & Co as manager. The agency is located at Via Carlo Felice 7, Genoa.


L’Abeille decides to transact insurance business in Italy again.


On May 11, Commercial Union appoints Bevington, Vaisey & Foster as fire agents for Italy. Norwich Union Fire appoints the accident agent Mr Fabbri of Genoa as fire agent for Italy.


By December 19, Norwich Union Fire has begun transacting marine business, under Mr Fabbri.


On January 19, Commercial Union appoints Bevington, Vaisey & Foster marine agent for Milan.


On July 27, Commercial Union appoints a new agent for Catania. By the end of the year, the company has opened two sub agencies for marine, at Lucca and Pisa, under Alberto Padetti.


The Commercial Union agency for Milan is now under the management of Mr Dexter of Bevington, Vaisey & Foster.


Commercial Union opens a branch in Milan.


The Commercial Union marine department now has 12 agencies in Italy.


Commercial Union appoints Bevington, Vaisey & Foster as accident agent. The Commercial Union office in Milan closes. The Norwich Union Fire portfolio is transferred to La Fondiaria.


On November 22, the Northern appoints Liberty Societa Anglo Italiano as agent for Italy.


On March 25, North British & Mercantile appoints G P Brizzolesi Ltd as agent for Genoa. Commercial Union agents Bevington, Vaisey & Foster are located at Corso Mattoetti 11, Milan by this date.


Norwich Union Fire appoints Onello Apuzzo Assicurazioni agent for Italy.


General Accident is authorised to write insurance business in Italy, excluding life, motor liability and bond and credit business.


General Accident opens a branch at Via Brera 3, Milan, under Mr B Curzon.


Commercial Union Italia is formed.


Commercial Union Vita, a life company, is formed in an agreement with the Italian Credit Bank.


Norwich Union Life operates via a subsidiary, Norwich Union Vita SpA while Norwich Union Fire acquires a new agency. Commercial Union establishes Commercial Union Italia SpA.


Norwich Union Fire changes the name of its agency to Norwich Union Assicurazioni.


Commercial Union Italia signs a bancassurance agreement with La Banca Popolare di Lodi, now Banca Popolare Italiana.


A bancassurance agreement is signed with Banca delle Marche, later Gruppo Banca Marche.


CGNU Holding Italia SpA is formed as an umbrella for the Aviva Group’s accident and life operations in Italy.


CGNU Holdings Italia changes its name to Aviva Holding Italia SpA.


The Aviva Group distributes its products through Banca Popolare Commercial e Industria e Carime


A new bancassurance agreement is signed with Banca Popolare di Bergamo, later UBI.


Commercial Union Italia SpA becomes Aviva Italia SpA.

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