Activate Group announces launch, acquisitions and growth plans

AGL has ambitious plans to achieve a 40% growth in turnover during the next 12 months and expects to announce further acquisitions and partnerships in the near future.

A new group of companies launched today, bringing together skilled service providers for a nationwide customer base of clients in the vehicle fleet management and motor insurance sector.

Led by an experienced executive team, Activate Group Ltd (AGL) has acquired three unique brands in the vehicle repair, insurance claims and technology sectors. It has ambitious plans to achieve a 40% growth in turnover during the next 12 months and expects to announce further acquisitions and partnerships in the near future.

AGL has acquired Sopp + Sopp, a Peterborough-based commercial and fleet repair specialist; Car Repair Network (CRN), a Yorkshire-based personal lines repair and engineering management provider, and Vigilance; a specialist claims technology company which deploys cutting edge solutions to support insurers in the fight against fraud.

Mark Woods

Mark Woods: Unveiling the AGL group of companies

The business is led by Executive Chairman Mark Woods, a former insurance executive with significant experience at well-known brands including Swinton and Insurance Australia Group where he was responsible for driving profitable growth and transformational change programmes. He is joined by Chairman Mark Wilcox, who founded AGS Risk solutions in 1999 before its sale to ExamWorks UK in 2014. The founding trio also includes Mark’s daughter Hannah Wilcox, who takes on the role of Group Chief Operating Officer and COO of CRN.

“I’m very excited to officially unveil the AGL group of companies today,” said Mark Woods. “From a standing start, AGL can provide customers with access to a nationwide network of over 500 independent vehicle repair specialists, over 120 staff including an in-house engineering workforce and a wide range of innovative technologies.”

Mark Wilcox, Chairman of AGL added: “The brands we have acquired are well established with strong customer relationships in the fleet management, corporate and insurance markets. These relationships will be carefully nurtured and maintained with the immediate benefit of an expanded group capability that can provide tailored solutions for clients.”

AGL has also made a number of appointments to support its growth plans.

  • Former WNS Assistance Vice President David Butler has joined in the role of Strategic Head of Repair Network
  • Shaun Slack, a former underwriter at Lloyd’s of London and latterly a director at Hill Dickinson, has been made Commercial Director.
  • Peter Gallagher, formerly of LV=, Hastings Direct and St Paul Reinsurance, joins as Consultant.
  • Jon Capstick has joined from Zurich Insurance subsidiary Endsleigh as Head of Projects and expert claims
  • Compliance consultant Sarah Rushforth joins as Audit & Compliance Manager.

Within individual business units, Sopp+Sopp Managing Director Jamie Sopp remains in place to lead the business. He is supported by a strong executive team of Matthew Henson (Operations Director), Callum Langan (Head of Account Management), Martin Key (Network Manager) and Paul Dagless (Financial Controller).

Car Repair Network is led by COO Hannah Wilcox and General Manager Lauren Probitts.

Vigilance is led by its founder Ryan Venter who continues in his role as Managing Director.

“This is a business full of opportunity.” adds Mark Woods. “AGL is focused on combining the very best from its people, technology and a nationwide, independent repair network to deliver a competitive product. I am pleased we have been able to attract colleagues of the calibre of David, Shaun, Peter, Jon and Sarah and look forward to making further announcements as we grow and develop AGL.”

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