Sompo Canopius AG (“Canopius”) today announces that it is to be acquired by a private equity consortium led by Centerbridge Partners, L.P. (“Centerbridge”) and including the private investment firm Gallatin Point Capital LLC. On completion of the transaction, Canopius will become a standalone business led by incumbent Executive Chairman Michael Watson and Chief Underwriting Officer Mike Duffy.
Since its founding in 2003, Canopius has developed into one of the top ten insurers at Lloyd’s, writing premium income in excess of $1.6 billion. The business is poised for growth on a scalable platform when conditions are conducive, and will continue to focus on underwriting excellence and building its presence and capabilities in support of its brokers and clients.
Michael Watson commented, “I am truly excited to be making this announcement today. This provides us with a golden opportunity to create a world class specialty (re)insurance franchise through harnessing the extraordinary talents of our staff and the acumen and financial resources of new owners Centerbridge. We are grateful to Sompo for their support for our business over the past three years and recognise their generosity in allowing us to chart this new course. Our close business and personal connections with Sompo have existed for many years and we hope to maintain a strong business relationship with them in future.”
Mike Duffy commented, “This is a fantastic opportunity for Canopius. We have vastly experienced, leading underwriters with deep knowledge and an obsessive underwriting mentality. They are supported by cutting edge analytics and a first class claims capability, giving us a superb platform to drive growth at the right time. We will continue to focus on those classes where we add value to our clients and brokers and seek profitable diversification through the recruitment of new teams and entry into new classes. I believe we represent a very attractive home for industry leading talent who will thrive in an environment where performance and accountability is rewarded and an independent mind-set is valued”.
Ben Langworthy, Senior Managing Director at Centerbridge said: “We are very pleased to announce the acquisition and greatly look forward to working with Michael Watson and all the team at Canopius. We believe that Canopius’ expertise and successful track record in the global insurance market offers a compelling proposition in the insurance space. Canopius is an established and high quality global (re)insurer, offering skilled underwriting, excellent risk management and a truly open-minded approach. Our aim will be to support continuity of the management team and business to build on the very impressive success achieved to date.”
The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018 and is subject to necessary regulatory consents.
For further information please contact:
+44 20 3750 2815
David Haggie / Richard Adams,
+44 20 7562 4444
Michael Watson, Executive Chairman
Michael is Executive Chairman of Canopius. He joined the organisation in May 2001. He also serves as a member of The Council at Society of Lloyd’s, a Board member of the Lloyd’s Market Association and is a Chartered Accountant. Prior to joining the Group, Michael worked in London, Bermuda, New York and Ireland as a senior executive in a variety of non-life insurance and reinsurance businesses. Michael has more than 30 years’ experience in financial services industries in the UK and overseas, including commercial banking, trade finance, stock broking, investment banking, and life insurance, as well as general insurance.
Mike Duffy, Group Chief Underwriting Officer
Mike commenced his career in 1980 and spent 20 years as a Lloyd’s broker, latterly with the Marsh Group of companies where he mainly specialised in placing Fortune 500 / large multi-national property business. He was a Managing Director with Guy Carpenter, running its Facultative Reinsurance division in New York, before moving into underwriting in late 2001. At that time he joined Ace Global Markets, with responsibility for underwriting its Direct & Facultative Property portfolio. He joined Canopius in January 2006 to form the Global Property Division, comprising Global Direct & Facultative Property and Crisis Management. He was appointed Group Chief Underwriting Officer and Sole Active Underwriter for Syndicate 4444 in 2016.
About Sompo Canopius AG (“Canopius”)
Canopius is a global specialty (re)insurer with underwriting operations in the UK, Netherlands, Switzerland, Bermuda, US and Singapore. It underwrites through Lloyd’s Syndicate 4444 (managed by Canopius Managing Agents Limited); a US surplus lines insurer, Canopius US Insurance, Inc.; and a Zurich-based reinsurance company, Sompo Japan Canopius Reinsurance AG.
2. Canopius offers the following specialist lines:
· Direct and facultative commercial property
· North American excess and surplus lines binding authorities, including commercial property, SME commercial package, casualty, homeowners, auto
Marine, Energy & Engineering
· Marine insurance, including cargo, liability, property, specie, niche hull and space
· Energy insurance, including property, liability, OEE/COW, construction, renewable
· Construction and engineering
· Heavy Industry
· Casualty, international general liability, professional indemnity, and financial institutions
· International accident & health
· International medical expenses
· Household and specialist property / niche personal lines
· Commercial combined for the SME sector
· Specialist Consumer Products including warranty, creditor, mortgage indemnity and accident & health
· Property treaty
· Casualty treaty
· Marine treaty
· Agriculture treaty
For more information, visit www.sompocanopius.com
About Centerbridge Partners, L.P. (“Centerbridge”)
Centerbridge Partners, L.P. is a private investment management firm employing a flexible approach across investment disciplines—from private equity to credit and related strategies, and real estate—in an effort to find the most attractive opportunities for our investors and business partners. The Firm was founded in 2005 and as of August 2017 has approximately $29 billion in capital under management with offices in New York and London. Centerbridge is dedicated to partnering with world-class management teams across targeted industry sectors and geographies to help companies achieve their operating and financial objectives.
For more information, please visit www.centerbridge.com