Monday 3 February 2020 4:26 pm

Searchlight Capital acquires majority stake in GRP

Searchlight Capital Partners has announced it will take a majority stake in Global Risk Partners (GRP). 

GRP founders Peter Cullum CBE and David Margrett, as well as founding investor Penta Capital, will all retain minority stakes. 

Searchlight paid an undisclosed fee for a majority stake but it is understand that the deal values GRP at around £650m.

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Ares Management will also continue as a capital provider to GRP. 

Cullum and Margrett set up the company in 2013 and it now claims to be the UK’s second largest independent insurance intermediary. 

“We are delighted that Searchlight will become the new majority shareholder in GRP. Searchlight is an ideal partner and it was obvious from an early stage that its ambition for the business and understanding of the opportunity was closely aligned with the group’s values and vision,” said Cullum and Margrett. 

Following the acquisition’s completion, group managing director Mike Bruce will become group chief executive. Founder David Margrett will become non-executive chairman and Peter Cullum will remain on the board as a non-executive director. 

Cullum, who founded Towergate in 1997, will become a non-executive director and it is understood he will also chair the M&A committee. It is understood that his stake is estimated to be around £100m.

Margrett will take over from Cullum as chairman and Mike Bruce will become the group chief executive. 

The acquisition is likely to be approved by regulators in the second half of the year. 

Bruce said: ““Partnering with Searchlight enables us to continue to capitalise on the considerable market opportunity ahead and their experience and relationships will be invaluable to GRP in executing our acquisition-led growth strategy.”

Read More: Total value of UK M&A deals rises by £15bn in 2019

“We look forward to working closely with Searchlight to build on GRP’s rapid development and continue GRP’s ambitious growth journey.”

Andrew Frey, a partner at Searchlight, said: “By combining local presence with deep data-driven expertise, GRP offers a better product set and a superior service to its clients. This customer centric culture is at the heart of our investment thesis and our high confidence in the Group’s exciting future.” 

International law firm Proskauer Rose advised Global Risk Partners in the transaction.