22 February 2022Insurance

GRP strikes third deal in 2022 to become ‘digital powerhouse’

Global Risk Partners (GRP), an acquisitive insurance broking and managing general agency (MGA) investment vehicle, has continued its acquisition spree with its third deal in less than two months starting 2022, as the company looks to build up a “digital powerhouse”.

GRP has agreed to acquire a majority stake in UK digital broker Hamilton Fraser, trading as HFIS Limited. The acquisition is subject to regulatory approval.

Borehamwood-based Hamilton Fraser was founded in 1996 by Simon Fox, Eddie Hooker and David Jacobs, and provides specialist insurance and risk management for the private rented property sector and the cosmetic and aesthetic practitioners industry, with a customer reach across the entire UK.

The business employs 223 staff all of whom will continue and move across to become part of GRP following completion of the deal.

Hamilton Fraser will continue to trade under its existing brands, which include mydeposits, Client Money Protect and Landlord Action, and will sit within GRP’s high growth digital division headed by Steve Anson, GRP’s chief operating officer.

Stephen Ross (pictured), head of M&A at GRP, said that GRP was impressed with the “sheer quality of the business, which has an outstanding track record of success in its chosen niches and is a superb fit for GRP.”

He added: “Hamilton Fraser is a high-class brokerage with a strong commitment to digital innovation and customer centricity, built on a deep understanding of the specialist markets in which they operate.”

Ross hailed GRP’s third deal in 2022, following the acquisition of Goldthorpe by Marshall Wooldridge and BIG Insurance by Alan & Thomas in January.

“We are fully invested in building up a digital powerhouse for GRP under Steve Anson’s leadership and the acquisition of Hamilton Fraser brings significant innovation, growth and talent to the unit,” he said.

“Our pipeline is as strong as it has ever been and we expect to be making further announcements during Q1 2022. We remain keen to talk to brokers and MGAs looking to create value and become part of one of the most dynamic, growth-oriented businesses in UK broking.”

Commenting on the deal, Eddie Hooker, who will remain as CEO and shareholder at Hamilton Fraser said: “Finding people who believed in our business and who understood our unique position in our chosen sectors was the important part of the entire transaction. GRP proved to us they would be the right home for us going forward. I’m confident they are the best custodians for our business, our people and our loyal clients as we embark on the next exciting stage of our development.

“There is everything to play for as the economy emerges from the pandemic and with GRP’s firepower at our disposal, our expectation is that we are in for a period of rapid growth in our chosen markets.

“We believe that the additional resource and capability provided by GRP will enable us to enhance our product and service proposition and cut better deals for our clients in what is a competitive market. With this deal, GRP has incentivised us to accelerate our growth, and I look forward to a long and fruitful future under this new partnership.”

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