In a deal that will expand its presence in key markets, Marsh will acquire HSBC Insurance Brokers Ltd. (HIBL), a wholly owned subsidiary of HSBC Bank, for £135 million (about U.S. $193 million), comprising a mixture of Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc. stock and cash.

The transaction, which is subject to all relevant regulatory approvals, is expected to close in the first quarter of 2010. Concurrent with this transaction, Marsh entered into a preferred strategic partnership (PSP) with HSBC. Under the terms of the PSP, Marsh will have preferred access to provide insurance broking and risk management services to HSBC’s corporate and private clients.

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