MBO kicks off next chapter of growth for insurance specialist

CEO Nick Houghton has completed a management buyout at JM Glendinning Insurance Brokers, with backing from growth investor Synova Capital.

The deal is intended to pave the way for the Guiseley-headquartered firm to grow its business four-fold over the next five years.

The company was established in 1972 by John and Joan Glendinning, and now operates from six offices across the UK.

Nick Houghton joined the business as group managing director in 2013. Over the last seven years he has overseen organic growth of 19% (CAGR) at the firm, which now generates £45m annual premium income, through new offices, new business lines, and the recruitment of experienced executives.

Post-MBO, Synova will provide funding and work in partnership with the existing JM Glendinning team to support their ambitious plans, built on supplementing strong organic growth with a series of complementary strategic acquisitions.

Houghton said: “I am delighted to have the backing of our new partners at Synova, and proud to be leading the business into this next chapter of growth in an exciting marketplace with our experienced team on board.

“I am also pleased that we have been able to allow John Glendinning to realise the value of what he and his late wife created nearly 50 years ago, as well as securing an independent future for the JMG team.”

As part of the transaction, former Stackhouse Poland CEO, Tim Johnson, has joined the JM Glendinning board as executive chairman, while Stackhouse Poland founder, Jeremy Cary, has joined as a board advisor.

Outgoing JM Glendinning CEO Paul Glendinning will remain part of the business, but scale back his activity to working with key clients.

Johnson added: “Nick and his team have built an impressive platform, generating market-leading levels of organic growth.

“With Synova’s investment, combined with the partnership-orientated culture of JMG, we are extremely well-positioned to acquire a series of attractive and complementary brokers across the UK.

“I believe this combination truly differentiates us from our peers, and I’m really looking forward to helping the team develop.”

Advisers on the transaction were Grant Thornton (financial & tax due diligence), Osborne Clarke (Synova legal), Addleshaw Goddard (JMG legal), Intuitus (IT DD), and KPMG (Synova financial advisor).

The Addleshaw Goddard team was led by Richard Hunt, with Carly Gulliver, Victoria Kierans, Cameron Allwood and Liam Johnson.

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