Deal propels company into top three adjusters

Directors of Ashworth Mairs Group (AMG) secured a £62m management buy-out (MBO) of the loss adjusting firm this week. This places AMG in the UK's top three against Cunningham Lindsey and Crawford & Co, and level with GAB Robins.

The eight directors, led by new group managing director Kevin Wood, are backed by Hermes Private Equity, with The Royal Bank of Scotland providing debt funding.

Founder David Mairs will leave the company to "pursue business interests outside of the insurance sector".

Rumours that a trade sale was mooted were scotched by the firm.

Wood said the directors had all taken an equity stake in the company but would not give a breakdown of their holdings.

"The whole process took four months. We had a number of interested parties but after a two-stage process we whittled it down to one," he said.

"Hermes is part of Hermes Pension Management. It believes we have a good business plan and is looking for good investments, not a quick exit. We went through a rigorous due diligence and it sees potential in our offering," he added.

AMG, established in 1992, offers a broad range of insurance services, including loss adjusting, surveying, claims management, alternative accommodation and engineering. It operates from 10 locations with over 250 employees.

Wood said all staff would remain and AMG would stay at its headquarters in the Wirral. "It is business as usual. We will expand and of course have growth targets to meet. We are ready to sign with two new clients and have just retained one, plus have three new initiatives to launch by the end of this year."

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