Groupama targets SME market with purchase of broker

Groupama UK has completed the purchase of a majority shareholding in the Bollington Group for an undisclosed sum. The change of ownership has received formal regulatory approval from the FSA.

Pierre Lefèvre, chairman and chief executive at Groupama UK said: “This is another valuable strategic initiative for our Group and one that offers us an opportunity for profitable growth within the UK’s SME insurance market.

"The Bollington Group is an award winning insurance intermediary and a significant player in a number of niche areas where we see the potential for profitable development. With quality people, excellent products and significant market knowledge, the business has developed strongly over the past few years and we will be supporting the existing management team to maximise the potential of their brands.”

Bollington will operate separately from Groupama Insurances, and will continue to be lead by Paul Moors, Stephen Wall and Joe Wall who will retain their positions as executive directors. The broker employs 180 staff in nine locations in north-west England, the Midlands, London and the Home Counties.

Commenting on the agreement with Groupama UK, Paul Moors, chairman of the Bollington Group said; “Over the past few years, Bollington has enjoyed some dynamic growth and we have some exciting plans for the continued profitable development of our business.

"To take the next steps we felt that we needed the support of a strong and secure partner that shares our values and aspirations and is prepared to invest in our success. We have been very impressed by Groupama, in their vision for the future and in their desire to help us build our company. We are very much looking forward to working with them.”

Bollington was established in 1973 and is headquartered in Bollington, near Manchester, and controls in excess of £75 million in premiums. The business incorporates FM Green Insurance Brokers of Witney, and M G Smithies of Wigan.