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US equity firm takes a stake in Honan

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Melbourne-based Honan Insurance Group has entered into a definitive strategic investment deal with US private equity firm TA Associates, the two companies announced today.

TA Associates will have an undisclosed stake in the business when the agreement is completed, which is expected some time in the second-half of the year, pending regulatory approvals and closing conditions. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Honan CEO Andrew Fluitsma calls the deal “an important milestone” for the broker, as it looks to tap into the global resources of its US investor to grow the business.

“The opportunity to bring aboard a long-term, well-respected growth-oriented global investor such as TA, that is fully aligned and supportive of our business model, is very exciting,” he said. “We are confident that Honan will benefit from TA’s complementary array of resources and skills.”

Group CEO and Executive Director Damien Honan is equally upbeat on what the investment will mean for the broker going forward.

“In choosing to partner with TA, the Honan team was particularly attracted by the firm’s global presence, long history of investing in the insurance brokerage sector and experience in partnering with growing companies,” he said.

“We believe that TA will be a valuable partner as we seek to further grow Honan both in the Australian market and overseas.”

Mr Honan, Mr Fluitsma and COO Laurence Basell will continue to run the business, which has more than 200 employees locally, in New Zealand and Southeast Asia.

The company’s main business is in the corporate, strata, real estate and employee benefits markets. It has achieved growth revenue of about 17% on a compound annual rate basis over the past 19 years.

“We have been impressed by Honan’s strong reputation within the commercial insurance brokerage industry and its vibrant corporate culture,” TA Associates Asia Pacific MD and co-head of Asia operations Edward Sippel said.

“We are delighted and honored to be partnering with the Honan management team as they embark on the company’s next phase of growth.”