US-based HCC Insurance Holdings is planning to further expand its European business through acquisition.

HCC owns brokers Dickson Manchester and Rattner Mackenzie, which it merged earlier this year. It also has a 20% stake in Illium Insurance Group.

HCC chairman Stephen Way said that in particular, the European directors' and officers' (D&O) market provided plenty of opportunities for significant growth.

"We have a strategy to expand our business in Europe - we're acquisitive and we're looking at some opportunities," Way said.

"Our D&O business has grown substantially, partly due to the demand for capacity and increased rates - there's just more companies buying the cover in Europe than there ever were before."