Integro hopes buy-out of Allan Chapman & James will complement existing accounts

Acquisition

The growing interest of US brokers in the UK retail space continued this week as New York-based Integro and Chicago-based Arthur J Gallagher both completed acquisitions.

Integro Insurance Brokers Ltd, the broker’s UK arm, snapped up media broker Allan Chapman & James (ACJ), while Gallagher bought Croydon retail broker Blenheim Park.

Colchester-based ACJ, whose clients boast major names in film, television and media, will keep its trading name and become a wholly owned subsidiary of Integro’s acquisitive London-based UK business.

ACJ’s founders Les Marshall and Terry Austin, along with commercial director John Claffey, will continue to manage the business and remain directors. The management team will be joined on the board by Integro chief financial officer Bill Goldstein, Integro International chief executive Ron Whyte and Integro London operations chief John Owens.

According to Owens, Integro’s latest drive into the UK retail arena will complement a number of existing accounts already owned by the broker in the music sector, including Live Nation.

“We’re looking to expand in that area,” he told Insurance Times. “We see that as a nice area, a niche area to be in. It was an opportunity to capitalise on that sector and develop an area we are already involved in.”

Integro’s UK arm was set up in 2005 and has since made a number of acquisitions, including Arch Intermediaries in 2009 and a marine book from London Market Insurance Brokers in 2010.

Owens said the UK business has its own resources but noted that its US parent is “very supportive”.

He added: “They are a big respecter of Lloyd’s, where we place most of our business.”

Earlier this year Integro was split into four divisions: a UK international reinsurance and wholesale arm targeting property, casualty, aviation and marine broking within the London market and Europe; a UK specialty reinsurance and wholesale division focusing on specialty lines within London and Europe; Integro USA; and Integro Canada.

Gallagher’s Blenheim Park acquisition will become part of the broking group’s UK operations and will report into Gallagher UK retail broking managing director Des O’Connor.

Blenheim Park operates in personal and commercial lines. It also owns the Intasure and Quotedesk brands, which specialise in insuring vacation and second homes, as well as handling small and medium-sized commercial business.

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