Underwriting agency expects to close deal within 12 months

Hyperion-owned underwriting agency DUAL is considering acquisitions of teams or businesses to expand its regional footprint in the UK.

Chief executive Shane Doyle said DUAL is “looking at a couple of opportunities right now”.

Acquisition targets include independent managing general agents (MGAs) with GWP or £5m to £30m, wholesale brokers with strong binders, or individual teams.

“There are some MGAs which have got to a size where to take the next step they need to invest or have the backing of the finance, risk and actuarial capabilities of a company like DUAL.

“I’d be surprised if we don’t do anything in the UK retail space in the next 12 months,” Doyle told Insurance Times.

DUAL often shares ownership with the businesses and teams it buys, which Doyle said incentivised them to write profitable business for its 25 capacity providers.

DUAL currently writes £100m GWP in the UK, most of which is London Market and less than 20% from the UK regions. DUAL will write more than $700m (£435m) globally next year following the acquisition of US firm PGI.

Over the past five years Dual has diversified from almost exclusively writing financial lines like professional indemnity and directors’ and officers’ policies into non-financial areas including property, excess loss reinsurance, accident and health and marine.