Oxygen Completes Smart & Cook Deal

November 16, 2006

Oxygen Holdings plc, the parent company of the Lloyd’s broker Oxygen Insurance Brokers Ltd, announced that it has completed the acquisition of the business of Smart & Cook Consulting Limited (SCC).

“SCC provides a range of services from full insurance broking to risk management advice to corporate clients in the UK,” said the announcement. “Importantly, these services are provided solely on a fee basis, regardless of the size or class of business, with transparent trading practices developed to provide clients with a clear understanding of how revenues are generated and the services provided. These principles are directly in line with Oxygen’s business model.”

The acquisition will include transfer of all staff and client portfolios to Oxygen. The business will become part of Oxygen’s broking operation and be branded Oxygen UK Corporate Risks, a division of Oxygen Insurance Brokers Ltd.

The bulletin also noted that the “acquisition will give Oxygen its first operating location outside London and provide a platform from which to develop a wider UK regional presence in all classes of insurance. The expanded client base will now encompass a number of large UK corporate businesses. Oxygen UK Corporate Risks will employ over 30 people and continue to operate from its offices at City Exchange in Albion Street, Leeds.”

Seán Hicks will join Oxygen as Head of Oxygen UK Corporate Risks, as will all of the members of his existing team including Chris Brady, Graeme McIntyre, Keith Florence, Nigel Harrison and Richard Butcher.

Hicks commented: “Oxygen has, in the two years since its launch, established a strong business with a team that provides exceptional market knowledge and expertise. Oxygen is also backed by investors who recognize the value of doing things differently in this sector and their support provides an additional level of experience many others in this sector just don’t have. Oxygen provides us with an excellent platform from which to grow the retail business.”

Oxygen Holdings CEO Nigel Barton indicated: “Seán and his team operate a business model that fits perfectly with the direction the insurance market is moving. Full transparency and high quality of service are becoming essential characteristics for all insurance businesses, especially given the FSA’s recent admission that the prospect of mandatory commission disclosure is becoming ever more likely. As a result we see our two businesses as a perfect fit.”

“Seán’s team also provides us with access to new client sectors and expanded product offerings that reflect the needs of UK insurance buyers in one of the most dynamic markets. There is no doubt that this is an exciting development for Oxygen as this business will play an important part in our future growth.”

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