Advent to inject £200m into UK insurance broker

The investment in Europe’s largest broker will allow it to ‘reignite’ its acquisition programme.

Advent International has agreed to invest £200 million (€233 million; $317 million) in Europe’s largest insurance broking group, Towergate.  The investment from Advent’s sixth global fund will allow Towergate, which currently has around 4,000 staff working from 100 UK offices, to go on an acquisition spree.

“Advent's investment provides real firepower as the group reignites its acquisition programme as part of our ambitious growth strategy,” said Peter Cullum, Towergate’s chairman and founder in a joint statement.

The insurance broking market remains “highly fragmented”, said Advent in a statement, despite the fact that since its inception Towergate has acquired more than 170 brokers and underwriters.

Advent closed its current global buyout fund on €6.6 billion in 2008. The firm has made a number of significant investments in the financial services sector since the onset of the financial crisis.

In August last year Advent teamed up with Bain Capital to acquire RBS WorldPay, the Royal Bank of Scotland’s card payment services business, for an enterprise value of £2.025 billion.

Other financial services investments in the Advent portfolio include: two debt collection businesses, GFKL Financial Services in Germany and Ultimo in Poland; and Domestic and General, a provider of extended warranties for domestic electrical goods.