R.I.’s Narragansett Bay Insurance to Use $200M Funding to Expand in East

January 8, 2008

Narragansett Bay Insurance Co. in Rhode Island has sealed a deal to obtain $200 million from three private equity investors.

The company said the equity will be used to grow the company’s homeowners business along the Eastern seaboard, insuring both coastal and inland properties and offering new options to homeowners in these markets.

The investors are Pine Brook Capital Partners LP, Soros Strategic Partners LP, and RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd.

Headquartered in Pawtucket, R.I., NBIC offers specialty insurance products and services to homeowners through independent insurance agents in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New York. The company emerged from the 158-year-old Pawtucket Mutual Insurance Co., which was originally acquired by NBIC’s parent company, Blackstone Financial Group, Inc., in December 2005.

NBIC is led by a management team that includes Stewart H. ‘Nick’ Steffey, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer; Geoffrey E. Hunt, executive vice president; Albert J. Pereira, president and chief underwriting officer; Patrick S. Wilmerding, vice president – strategic planning; and Sean F. Murphy, senior vice president and chief financial officer.

“When we took over the business we found a strong operational core that we could build on. We have refocused the company, providing a solution for homeowners who have experienced disruption in the marketplace and who are looking for superior products and service,” said Steffey. “This investment will enable us to enter new markets and provide coverage for even more homeowners.”

NBIC said it utilizes catastrophe modeling and other advanced technology to provide coverage for homeowners.

“We’re focused on tailoring coverage to individual needs, regardless of where our insureds are located,” said Hunt, adding, “NBIC is offering consistent coverage in catastrophe prone areas where some competitors have exited.”

The transaction is subject to the approval of the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation.

Pine Brook Road Partners LLC is a New York-based private equity firm. Soros Strategic Partners LP is a private investment vehicle intended for long-term duration investments primarily for the benefit of George Soros and members of the Soros family. RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd., through its operating subsidiaries, is a global provider of reinsurance and insurance to cover the risk of natural and man-made catastrophes. It is based in Bermuda.

Source: Narragansett Bay Insurance Co.

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