North American pet insurance is a $500 million industry, and its expected to grow 13% a year.
The industry is growing as more people are looking to insure their pets. Select Walmarts (WMT) in Canada started offering customers pet insurance through Western Financial Insurance earlier this year. Cabelas (CAB) joined the pet insurance market when it launched Cabelas Pet Insurance in 2011. Start-ups are also joining in on the action. After paying high vet bills Chris and Natasha Ashton started their own pet insurance company in 2004. The company obtained an exclusive license to Britian’s Petplan. The company had an annual revenue of $40 million in 2012 and employs over 100 workers, reports CNBC.
Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI) is the oldest and largest pet insurance provider in America. The company was founded in 1982 and currently holds more than 50% of the market. More employers are starting to offer workers the option to insure their pets. VPI currently handles pet insurance for over 3,000 companies, and one-third of Fortune 500 companies supply pet insurance through VPI, reports CNBC.
“Basically, anything that somebody can do to a human, a veterinarian can do to your pet,” Adam Fell, a VPI spokesman, told CNBC. “But with that comes the increase in cost.”
Companies that create medicines and vaccines for pets include Zoetis (ZTS), Pfizer (PFE) and Merck (MRK)