Arch Insurance Europe has purchased the UK Commercial Lines business owned by The Ardonagh Group and part of its Geo Underwriting operating segment.
The acquisition will give Arch a meaningful presence and an extended office network across the UK that will complement its existing London market business, which is focused on wholesale distribution and delegated authority business, said Arch in a statement.
The transaction is an asset-only deal that includes the renewal rights for Fusion, Arista and Towergate Commercial Underwriting, generating more than £150 million ($191.1 million) of gross written premium in 2017 and focused on writing commercial property, casualty, motor, professional liability, personal accident and travel. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.
Approximately 250 employees will move to Arch as a result of the transaction.
There is minimal overlap with the existing Arch business written in the UK and this transaction provides Arch with access to a leading regional distribution network as a key part of its strategy to build a scalable regional footprint across the UK and Europe, through which it can deliver a broad range of class leading specialty small and medium enterprise (SME) products to its broker partners, the Arch statement continued.
“We have a clearly stated strategy to build out our distribution capabilities across the UK and Europe and the acquisition of Geo’s commercial lines business represents an important step in this process, building upon the success of the earlier acquisition of Axiom Underwriting,” said Matt Shulman, president and CEO, Arch Insurance Europe.
“By expanding our regional presence with the addition of nine offices we immediately gain scale and presence in our target markets and we can deliver a broader range of specialist insurance solutions through a network of over 2,000 brokers,” Shulman added.
“We are gaining a well-respected and highly experienced team of underwriting and distribution professionals who are perfectly placed to help us build a significant and sustainable business that can meet the growing needs of its clients,” he said.
David Ross, CEO of The Ardonagh Group, added: “In Arch, our general commercial MGA has found a perfect home and will thrive as part of a blue-chip insurer firmly focused on growth and committed to serving UK brokers. Today’s news is a testament to all the work done to improve the commercial underwriting brands over the last 18 months and a credit to the dedication of the teams that will join Arch.”
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