Prestige, who owns Abbey Insurance, announces it is selling half of its shares to American equity firm

Northern Irish insurance group Prestige Insurance Holdings has announced it is selling the shares of some of its founding members to an American equity company.

Prestige was founded in 1973 by George Storey, who is retaining a significant shareholding and remains on the board.

Prestige is the parent company of firms such as Abbey Insurance and two Octane brands.

USA-based equity firm Capital Z Partners Management has now made a multi-million-pound investment after the sale of the significant shareholding, a spokeswoman from Prestige told the Belfast Telegraph.

It is thought the deal effects 50% of the Prestige business. The deal has been agreed to facilitate the retirement of some of the company’s older directors, but Storey and other executive directors will retain a shareholding.

The spokeswoman also stated that it has reassured its 572 staff that their jobs are not at risk.

New York-based Capital Z has invested more than $2.9bn in more than 40 transactions since 1990, including Jelf Group and Lancashire Holdings.

The deal is still subject to regulatory approval.