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Homeserve’s US buy seen as positive

SHARES in home insurance group Homeserve rose over five per cent yesterday after it announced the acquisition of US company National Grid Energy.

The company, which provides cover for emergencies such as broken boilers and overflowing washing machines was one of the biggest climbers on the FTSE 250 after its expansion into the US market.

National Grid Energy provides home repair services to four states in the US. Homeserve also signed a ten-year marketing agreement with National Grid USA.

It hopes the deals will give it a launchpad for future expansion into the US market.

Arbuthnot analyst David Brockton said: “This deal represents conversion of one of the group’s larger pipeline opportunities, with one of the largest utilities in the US and should hopefully act as a catalyst for further expansion.”

Homeserve provides more than nine million emergency insurance policies across the UK, France, Spain and the US. It has also forged a series of partnerships with utility, energy and insurance companies across the globe. The company – which has more than 4,000 staff worldwide – de-merged from South Staffordshire Water in 2004.