Folgate has launched plans for a new broker network based on buying minority stakes in big regional operations. The Folgate Broker Alliance will be created from brokers controlling more than £1m commission.

Folgate will buy stakes of about 25% in each business and agree a formula for full acquisition, typically three to five years later.

The deals will enable brokers to release cash tied up in the company to organise the exit of an older partner or grow the business.

It will also enable brokers to enjoy the hard market while guaranteeing an exit strategy.

The structure of the deals will enable members to use the Folgate Partnership's products, agencies, and central marketing and compliance support.

The brokers likely to become part of the Folgate Broker Alliance will be large businesses that could develop to become regional hubs of the future.

The Folgate Partnership has bought up 26 brokers since its launch in April 2002. They have ranged in size from brokers handling premium from £5m to £25m. It now controls more than £265m of premium.