Prestige Insurance Holdings Purchased by US-based Capital Z
Prestige Insurance Holdings Limited* has completed a deal which sees US global equity firm, Capital Z Partners Management, LLC (“Capital Z”) take a majority share in the Group, which owns Northern Ireland’s leading insurance broker, Abbey Insurance.
Trevor Shaw, Prestige Insurance Holdings Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO), said, “I am delighted to welcome Capital Z as our majority shareholders. They are long term partners who bring a great deal of knowledge of our sector, along with funds for acquisitions and growth. This is a very positive move for our staff, customers and insurance suppliers.”
Jonathan Kelly, Partner of Capital Z, commenting on the deal said, “The Prestige Group represents a great insurance platform for us, having strong distribution, particularly in Northern Ireland, with niche underwriting positions in the home and car markets, together with its own IT platform. We look forward to working with Trevor Shaw and his team to help it fulfil its potential.”
The business will continue under the existing local management team of Trevor Shaw as Group CEO and Paul Hanna as Group Chief Financial Officer, along with a number of other local shareholders. However, as part of the deal, company founder George Storey will retire from his position as Chairman. He will remain on the Board in a non-executive capacity. Phil Bunker, previously managing director of LV Broker, executive director of Churchill, and managing director of NIG, will join the Board as non-executive Chairman.
George Storey said, “I am incredibly proud to have built a business over 45 years which has attracted such high quality investment from an investor which sees its strength and potential. I am confident to leave the Group in the hands of a very capable management team and excellent staff. I look forward to supporting the new owners in a non-executive role in the future and I wish them every continuing success.”
Phil Bunker comments: “I know this business well and have great respect for what George, Trevor, Paul and their teams have accomplished. I am excited by its prospects and look forward to building a close working relationship with the management team and Capital Z.”
The Prestige Insurance Holdings Group provides a wide range of end to end insurance services including insurance broking, underwriting, insurance software development and claims management, through its flagship brands which include Abbey Insurance Brokers, Prestige Underwriting and Cover.Net.
The deal has been approved by both the Financial Conduct Authority and the Central Bank of Ireland.
Media Contact: Vicki Caddy at ASG & Partners, tel 028 90 802000; email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editors:
Capital Z will have a controlling 65% share in the Group, which will remain under the existing local management and leadership of Group CEO Trevor Shaw and Group Chief Financial Officer Paul Hanna.
PRESTIGE INSURANCE HOLDINGS *
Established in 1973, Prestige Insurance Holdings Limited is the largest privately-owned Insurance Broker and Managing General Agent in Northern Ireland. Employing 519 people, it has operations in Northern Ireland, Great Britain and Republic of Ireland.
The Holdings Group provides a wide range of insurance services including Insurance Broking, Underwriting, Claims Management and Car Hire. Trading companies within the Group include, among others: Prestige Underwriting Services Ireland Ltd (Republic of Ireland), Prestige Underwriting Services Limited (UK), Octane and Octane London Markets and Abbey Insurance Brokers, which, following the successful acquisition and integration of Open and Direct Insurance Services in 2016, is now the largest Independent Personal Lines Insurance Brokerage in Northern Ireland.
Capital Z is a leading global private equity firm focused exclusively on the financial services industry. Together with its predecessor funds, Capital Z has invested approximately $2.9 billion in over 40 transactions since 1990, including well over $2 billion in the insurance and insurance services sectors alone.
Phil Bunker, an economics graduate from UCL, is a chartered accountant who was trained at Price Waterhouse in London. He was 14 years at broker insurer NIG during which time it carved out a position as the brokers’ champion and won multiple awards. He was instrumental in introducing the business to the direct writer, Churchill. As managing director of NIG, he was an executive director of the successful Churchill Group that was eventually sold to RBS. With four ex-colleagues he then co-founded ABC Insurance, which was purchased by Liverpool Victoria (LV). At LV, he became a director of the insurance company and founded the broker business and the Commercial SME line of the businesses. Phil is well known in the industry and has held several representative positions at the Association of British Insurers. Currently he actively invests in technology start-ups through his involvement with ABC Investors. He has also recently been appointed as a NED to the Insurance Holdings Board of the Automobile Association (the AA).