Avantia Limited / ECI Partners
Cavendish Corporate Finance, the UK’s leading sell-side mid-market M&A firm, is delighted to have advised on the MBO of the Avantia Group, the award winning financial services technology and analytics business that provides property insurance. The £57m MBO was backed by mid-market buyout specialist, ECI Partners.
Avantia, which operates the online consumer home insurance brand HomeProtect, has invested heavily in R&D, building up valuable and unique IP and capitalising on its rich and nuanced domain knowledge which allows the business to offer home insurance to many households when others consider it too difficult.
The business maintains the most effective online quote ability of any household insurer in the UK, returning a quote to over 97% of applicants, almost 25% more than its closest competitor. More than 80% of its new customers are in what other insurers would deem to be ‘difficult to insure’ risk categories.
In early 2013, Avantia hired Phillip Walter as CEO, with a mandate to grow the business and continue to invest in technology and R&D. Following Mr. Walter’s appointment, Avantia won the Transform Award and the Insurance Times Tech Award for its innovative use of data for real-time risk pricing, also placing as a finalist for the British Insurance Awards and UK Broker Awards.
Cavendish completed on the sale of 12 deals in 2013. Its previous TMT deals include: Datong plc, Redbox Recorders, Opta Sports, Primal Pictures, Lightech and Focus Solutions Group.
John Farrugia, Partner and Head of Technology at Cavendish said:
“We are delighted to have secured the sale of Avantia Group in a highly competitive process -we are confident that ECI will prove to be the ideal partner to help capitalise on its growth potential. Avantia has a unique proposition in the property insurance market and is entering an exciting stage of development.”
Phillip Walter, CEO of Avantia and HomeProtect said:
“We are delighted to be working with ECI to further grow HomeProtect and our other evolving brands. It is an exciting time for our business, our partners and our customers. HomeProtect already provides cost effective insurance for tens of thousands of customers, many of whom had found it difficult to find online cover elsewhere. This investment from ECI will allow us to grow faster organically as well as by acquisition, to offer more customers the peace of mind that HomeProtect delivers.”
David Walker, co-founder said:
“ECI have a proven track record investing in ambitious, high-growth companies. We are delighted to have them on board, as they support HomeProtect in the next stage of its expansion.”
“When looking for an advisor we decided we wanted someone who had specific experience in negotiating within the Private Equity space. It requires some additional skills to those needed in a trade sale and we were lucky to have found in Cavendish, a company that was able to help us.
“The finnCap Cavendish team were exceptional from start to finish on our deal, helping us to prepare meticulously for the process, identifying a group of highly strategic buyers and negotiating a fantastic deal for our Shareholders. We would thoroughly recommend them to any owners considering an exit.”
“Thank you to John and your fantastic team at FinnCap Cavendish for your unwavering support, dedication, work ethic and belief in Xexec’s mission. John, Mike and Sam were instrumental in bringing the deal to a successful completion and provided invaluable guidance throughout the process.
We look forward to our new partnership with the Castik and Abry teams who are the ideal partners as we continue to expand our business and pursue the next phase of our strategy.”
‘The finnCapCavendish team were great to work with, they took time to listen, properly understand our objectives and tailored the process to get a fantastic result for us. They really understood the value drivers in the ICT sector and had access to all the key buyers for our business, they were able to efficiently manage the sale process maintaining the great relationship we’d built we Adept as our preferred buyer.’
“Thank you to Jon, Steph and Chirag for their tireless efforts in recent months. Jon offered invaluable leadership and strategic advice, while Chirag and Steph provided diligent and supportive guidance throughout. They also behaved throughout as one would expect friends and confidants to act, which is very helpful in a confidential situation. We were delighted with the result and very, very pleased to have had the three of them as our team.”
“Cavendish understood our ambitions from day one and went to great lengths to understand the minutiae of the business in order to effectively position the investment proposition as it evolved throughout the transaction. Cavendish were not just an advisor but a true partner to the Systal team throughout the process all the way through to completion.”
“The Cavendish team of Jon, Chris, Chirag and Soben steered the process from start to finish and were instrumental in bringing this transaction to a successful conclusion with the right partner in the form of Naviga. The sale of Miles 33 to Naviga marked a successful exit for the financial investors and provides management with a larger platform to grow the business.”
“We are delighted to have secured this transformational funding. The open market does not serve everyone and the funding enables us to provide a choice to many more sellers. We would also like to thank Jon, Ben, Steph for their efforts – they provided invaluable advice and hands-on support throughout the process, providing us with a trusted advisor that saw the transaction through to completion.”
In Thomson Reuters, we found a strategic buyer that shares our commitment to the rule of law. We have a proven track record of enabling the courts’ digital transformation of the UK. We are optimistic that with Thomson Reuters global footprint we will be able to help courts around the world to continue to operate effectively and efficiently into the future.
We’d also like to place on record a huge thank you to Jon, Sam and the Cavendish team. From identifying Pelican Capital through to providing advice and support throughout the due diligence process, Cavendish deserve a great deal of credit for delivering the fundraise in an exceptionally challenging environment.
“On behalf of the shareholders, we’d like to thank Cavendish for their advice, tireless work ethic and professionalism throughout the process. Jon, Mike and the team were instrumental in achieving a fantastic result for both the shareholders and the company, as we embark on our exciting next phase of growth with a new investor. We knew we had chosen the right partner in Cavendish and you did not let us down.”
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