Acquisition takes Oval’s annual premium income to £350m

Oval has made its first move into the north west of England with the acquisition of the publicly listed broker, Creamer Group.

The purchase of the Warrington-based broker is Oval’s seventh buy in as many months and expands the consolidator’s geographical presence in the UK.

It takes Oval’s annual premium income to £350m.

Last month, Insurance Times revealed that Oval was set to make a purchase in the North West (News 14 June).

Jeff Herdman, Oval’s managing director, said following the purchase of Creamer the group now had a good regional presence in England and Scotland.

But, he added, it had taken time to get a toe-hold in the North West. “It has taken us three years to buy a north west business,” Herdman told Insurance Times.

“Many brokers in that area see their future as their own rather than as part of something bigger.”

He admitted that Oval did not have a presence in the Newcastle area, but said that the company was looking to target the region.

Creamer Group, with an annual premium income of £16m, has expertise in shipbuilding and environmental risks, among other areas.

Herdman said Oval was set to boost Creamer’s business by poaching several teams from rival brokers in the area.

Oval has expanded its regional presence in recent months with a series of acquisitions and has been aiming to boost its presence in the Midlands, Manchester and Scotland.

Other companies, including Towergate, have also been looking to grow in the North West.