Dispute follows poaching of 119 clients by IRS

The long-running court case between Towergate and Bob Beckett’s Insurance Risk Solutions has come to a dramatic end with an £825,000 settlement from Beckett and other defendants.

As predicted in Insurance Times (News, 28 June), the legal battle has been settled out of court, days before the full hearing scheduled for 9 July was due to be heard.

Towergate had accused Beckett and 15 former Towergate employees who joined him at Insurance Risk Solutions of breaching restrictive covenants.

Towergate said 119 clients had been approached in breach of covenant, resulting in the loss of £400,000 of commission income.

In a statement,Towergate said that Beckett had apologised and that the defendants were paying £825,000 in damages and costs, as well as picking up their own legal costs. Towergate estimated the total cost to be £1m.

Towergate executive chairman Peter Cullum said: “We pay top dollar for businesses we acquire, so we do not expect vendors to look to reclaim the business they have sold.

“This would be like buying a house then finding the previous owners trying to move back in.”

Beckett said he would not comment on the specifics of the case.