Wholesale Broker AmWINS Agrees to $1.3 Billion Recapitalization with New Mountain

Wholesale insurance broker AmWINS Group Inc. announced today that its management and employee shareholders have agreed on a $1.3 billion recapitalization with private equity firm New Mountain Capital of New York. Other terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“This new partnership allows AmWINS to continue its growth trajectory both organically and through strategic acquisitions,” said M. Steven DeCarlo, CEO of AmWINS.

The deal ends the firm’s partnership with Parthenon Capital Partners. Parthenon bought a majority percent stake in AmWINS in 2005. “We have greatly enjoyed working with AmWINS and are proud to have contributed in building the industry’s leading franchise,” said Brian Golson, a managing partner at Parthenon Capital Partners.

DeCarlo said that employee shareholders will continue to own more than 30 percent of AmWINS at the conclusion of the recapitalization. He said there will be no changes to AmWINS’ senior management, local management or operational teams as a result of this transaction.

Last month it was reported that Parthenon would be selling its stake and management would cede some of its ownership to recapitalize.

At the time, DeCarlo said, “AmWINS is not for sale. It is simply recapitalizing, which is part of the normal lifecycle of a private equity funded business.

AmWINS has grown rapidly since it partnered with Parthenon. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., AmWINS today places $7 billion of premiums through 16,000 retail brokerage firms and more than 1,000 insurance carriers. It has 2,300 employees in 87 offices located across 21 countries.

New Mountain Capital currently manages private and public equity funds with approximately $9 billion in aggregate capital commitments.

“We are delighted to become a long-term partner with AmWINS, the clear leader in the specialty insurance distribution market,” said Alok Singh, managing director at New Mountain Capital.

Subject to customary regulatory approvals and closing conditions, the transaction is expected to close within the next 60 days. Financial Technology Partners LP, Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Willis Capital Markets & Advisory acted as financial advisors to AmWINS. Credit Suisse and Macquarie Capital acted as financial advisors to New Mountain.