Chief executive describes the acquisition as ’a significant growth opportunity’
Claims services provider Handl Group has today (20 April 2022) bought IPRS Group (Injury, Prevention and Rehabilitation Services) in what the firm has described as its ”biggest acquisition” to date.
The transaction signals Handl Group’s aim to further build its market presence in the health and wellbeing sector. The deal completed on 8 April 2022 and the consideration is undisclosed.
Speaking on the acquisition, Handl Group chief executive Graham Pulford said: “This is a significant growth opportunity that will give us additional scale and new distribution channels in private medical insurance (PMI), as well as elite sport - an IPRS Group specialism.
”It will also further cement the relationships Handl Group currently has with the UK insurance industry.
“[This] is the biggest acquisition Handl Group has completed to date and we intend to support IPRS Group’s ambitious growth plans through additional investment, access to the skilled people at Handl and also the acceleration of [its] already advanced digital offerings.”
IPRS Group is based in Suffolk. It is a specialist organisation that offers a diverse range of clinical products and services to both the public and private sectors.
Following the acquisition, IPRS Group’s senior management team and 3,000 staff will remain with the business, operating under the company’s existing brands - this includes chief executive Martyn Jackson, who will now report to Pulford.
Best possible custodian
The deal will see the four constituent IPRS Group brands become part of Handl Group’s Lancashire-based portfolio. These brands include:
- IPRS Health: Provides physiotherapy, mental health and wellbeing services for the insurance, corporate, NHS and occupational health sectors.
- IPRS Mediquipe: Distributes Biodex functional assessment, rehabilitation equipment and training to elite sports, universities and the NHS.
- IPRS Aeromed: Provides paramedic led medical repatriation and other specialist services.
- PFAS: Independent provider of in-house medical assessments, delivered by specialist health practitioners.
Jackson joined IPRS Group in 2004. He said: “It was quickly apparent from my discussions with Pulford and the team that Handl Group will be the best possible custodian for our company and our clients.
“Their focus on people plus technology closely mirrors our own approach and new investment in our capabilities as a result of this deal will take IPRS Group to a new level of growth.
“I am particularly excited by the opportunities for further work in the public sector, where our scale and strengthened capabilities and infrastructure will open up opportunities to bid for larger government contracts.”
IPRS Group has worked with a number of blue-chip businesses, including Aviva, QBE, Vitality and the NHS.
This latest acquisition further emphasises Pulford’s focus on Handl Group becoming a provider of complementary services that combine people and technology.
Pulford said: “The group already has a proven model of growth and is poised to further enhance its market presence following a number of contract wins this year, both renewals and new business. There will also be a definite opportunity to sell the unique services of IPRS to existing Handl customers.
“We intend to capitalise on the synergies in our existing health businesses, which provide health and rehabilitation services to the insurance and legal markets.”