UK business insurance platform Simply Business is getting bought by US giant Travellers for £400 million

Jason Stockwood, CEO Simply Business.Simply BusinessJason Stockwood, CEO Simply Business.

LONDON — Simply Business, the UK’s largest business insurance broker, is being sold to US insurance giant The Travellers Group for $US490 million (£400 million).

Simply Business, operational since 2005, is the UK’s leading online broker for business insurance.

The company has over 400,000 customers, many of them tradesmen, made a pre-tax profit of £5 million in 2015, according to accounts filed at Companies House.

It works with the likes of Hiscox, Axa, and Zurich, who underwrite the policies its sells.

Travellers, which offers home, personal, and car insurance, had revenues of $US28 billion (£22.9 billion) last year. The acquisition comes amid a wave of interest in the so-called “InsurTech” — insurance technology — sector and Travellers’ CEO Alan Schnitzer says the deal is about improving innovation within the company, which is over 160 years old.

Schnitzer says in a release announcing the deal: “With technology and innovation driving customer preferences and expectations, advancing our digital agenda to best serve our customers and the marketplace is a key strategic priority.”

Simply Business was acquired by Aquiline Capital Partners in April last year for £120 million.

Jason Stockwood, CEO of Simply Business, said: “This is a tremendous opportunity for our company and employees, as well as a strong validation of our business model.

The company launched its first US office in December and Stockwood says: “I am excited about Simply Business benefiting from Travellers’ extensive knowledge of the US market as we develop our approach there, as well as the resources it has to support potential expansion into additional markets. Our shared values and commitment to innovation make this transaction a perfect fit.”

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