US-based private equity firm Capital Z Partners Management has acquired a 65% stake in Prestige Insurance for an undisclosed amount.
Prestige Insurance, which was established in 1973, is the owner of Northern Ireland’s insurance broker Abbey Insurance.
Prestige Insurance is claimed to be the largest insurance broker and managing general agent (MGA) in Northern Ireland. The company employs 519 people.
The company, which has operations in Northern Ireland, the UK and Republic of Ireland,offers a range of end to end insurance services such as insurance broking, underwriting, insurance software development and claims management.
Trading companies within the group include Abbey Insurance Brokers, Prestige Underwriting Services Ireland (Republic of Ireland), Prestige Underwriting Services Limited (UK), Octane and Octane London Markets.
After the acquisition, Prestige will continue under the existing management team headed by CEO Trevor Shaw and group chief financial officer as Paul Hanna along with several other local shareholders.
However, as part of the transaction, the chairman and company founder George Storey will retire, but will remain on the board in non-executive capacity.
Phil Bunker, LV Broker previously managing director, Churchill executive director and NIG managingdirector, will join the board as non-executive chairman.
Prestige Insurance Group CEO Trevor Shaw 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.”
Capital Z partner Jonathan Kelly 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.”
Capital Z is a private equity firm focused on financial services industry. It has invested nearly $2.9bn in over 40 transactions since 1990 which include more than $2bn only in insurance and insurance services sectors.