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J&H Marsh & McLennan Inc. is expanding its presence in Colombia with the purchase of a majority stake in Companias DeLima S.A. for an undisclosed sum.

Bogota, Colombia-based DeLima has nine offices in Colombia and was the correspondent of the former Marsh & McLennan Inc. for 41 years.

DeLima will be combined with the existing operations of J&H Marsh & McLennan in Colombia, which were owned by the former Johnson & Higgins.

The purchase is subject to regulatory approval.

Also, Willis Corroon Group P.L.C. is expanding its presence in Latin America following several recent transactions.

In an recent interview, Executive Chairman John Reeve stated that the London-based broker intends to be among the top three brokers in each market where it does business (BI, July 20).

As part of that strategy, Willis Corroon has agreed to acquire a 50% stake in a large Mexican independent broker, Bourchier, Marquard, Zepeda Agente de Seguros y de Fianzas S.A. de C.V.

The Mexico City-based broker, to be renamed BMZ Willis Corroon, is estimated to be the country's third-largest broker. Willis Corroon already has a Mexico City branch for its reinsurance intermediary unit, Willis Faber & Dumas. BMZ also has offices in Guadalajara, Ciudad Juarez, Tijuana and Monterrey, Mexico.

In a separate move that is expected to make Willis the top reinsurance broker in Venezuela, Willis also completed merging Corsa Corretaje de Reaseguros S.A. with its Caracas-based reinsurance operations, Willis Faber Corretaje de Reaseguros S.A., to form Willis Faber Corsa S.A.

At the same time, Willis Corroon has set up a strategic agreement with Venezuelan retail broker Ronto Aralca & Asociados S.A. in Caracas to serve clients in Latin America.

Financial details were not available and Willis officials were unable to comment on the deals.