Deals: Searchlight Buys Majority Stake in GRP Group

Global Risk Partners (“GRP”, “the Group”), the leading independent insurance intermediary, is pleased to announce a major investment into the firm from Searchlight Capital Partners (‘Searchlight’), a global private investment firm.

Founders Peter Cullum CBE and David Margrett and founding investor Penta Capital will all retain minority stakes, alongside the broader management team. Ares Management will also continue as an important capital provider to GRP.

The acquisition is subject to regulatory approval and following its completion, Mike Bruce, Group Managing Director, will become Group Chief Executive. The Group will also continue to benefit from the unrivalled expertise and experience of its founders, with David Margrett becoming non-executive Chairman and Peter Cullum remaining on the Board as a non-executive Director.

Founded in 2013, the Group has grown rapidly since inception, both organically and through acquisitions. Today, GRP is the UK’s second largest independent insurance intermediary with Gross Written Premium approaching £800m and more than 1,600 employees.

GRP operates retail broking, specialist MGA and Lloyd’s businesses, enabling the Group to serve the growing insurance and risk management needs of its clients, and create value through its presence across multiple points in the distribution chain.

Searchlight is a global private investment firm with over $7 billion in assets under management and offices in New York, London and Toronto. Searchlight seeks to invest in businesses where its long-term capital and strategic support accelerate value creation for all stakeholders.

Founders Peter Cullum CBE, Executive Chairman and David Margrett, Group Chief Executive said:

“We are both immensely proud of the business we have helped build from a standing start. In little over six years, it has grown to become one of the largest insurance intermediaries in the UK.

We are delighted that Searchlight will become the new majority shareholder in GRP. Searchlight is an ideal partner and it was obvious from an early stage that its ambition for the business and understanding of the opportunity was closely aligned with the Group’s values and vision.”

Mike Bruce, Group Chief Executive designate, added:

“Partnering with Searchlight enables us to continue to capitalise on the considerable market opportunity ahead and their experience and relationships will be invaluable to GRP in executing our acquisition-led growth strategy. The power of this strategy is demonstrated by the quality of the businesses we have acquired and the talented people who have joined GRP through these acquisitions. We are proud that our scalable platform attracts entrepreneurial companies that want to join GRP to accelerate their growth and enhance the value proposition that they can provide to their customers. We look forward to working closely with Searchlight to build on GRP’s rapid development and continue GRP’s ambitious growth journey.”

Andrew Frey, Partner at Searchlight, commented:

“We are delighted to be partnering with GRP and its management team. The Group’s differentiated ‘hub and spoke’ model and entrepreneurial, owner-driver culture has enabled GRP to build a leading market position through impressive growth. By combining local presence with deep data-driven expertise, GRP offers a better product set and a superior service to its clients. This customer centric culture is at the heart of our investment thesis and our high confidence in the Group’s exciting future. We look forward to partnering with Peter, David, Mike, Penta and the entire GRP team to drive the next chapter of GRP’s success.”

Oliver Haarmann, Founding Partner at Searchlight, added:

“We look forward to working with GRP to accelerate its growth in a highly fragmented industry through Searchlight’s deep investment, industry and operational expertise, as well as our transatlantic presence.”

Steven Scott, Founding Partner at Penta Capital, commented:

“We have enjoyed working with the GRP team, jointly funding the business with Peter Cullum and management from effectively a start-up to one of the largest independent UK brokers today. Peter, David and the team have created a business of scale in each of its chosen markets which has a terrific track-record of consistent and profitable growth. We are pleased to remain investors in the next stage and look forward to working with Searchlight on the next phase of growth for GRP and the team.”

GRP was advised by Evercore and Slaughter and May. Penta Capital was advised by Dickson Minto W.S. Management was advised by Wyvern Partners and Proskauer Rose (UK) LLP. Searchlight was advised by RBC Capital Markets and Willkie Farr & Gallagher.

About alastair walker 12505 Articles
20 years experience as a journalist and magazine editor. I'm your contact for press releases, events, news and commercial opportunities at Insurance-Edge.Net

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