Belfast Telegraph

Zurich sells student insurer Endsleigh to broker A-Plan

Endsleigh was founded by the National Union of Students (NUS) in 1965.

Insurance giant Zurich has taken further steps to simplify its business by selling student insurer Endsleigh to brokering firm A-Plan.

The undisclosed deal will see Endsleigh shift to A-Plan over the course of the new year, if the tie-up clears regulatory hurdles.

Endsleigh, which was founded by the National Union of Students (NUS) in 1965, will function as a stand-alone business and continue to operate from its base in Cheltenham.

The specialist insurer saw profits tumble 64% to £2.5 million and turnover drop 16% to £39 million in 2016, according to accounts filed at Companies House, as it pushes through an overhaul of its IT systems.

Jeff Brinley, chief executive of Endsleigh, said: “This is a really exciting time for us and we’re delighted to be joining such a respected organisation as A-Plan, who continue to deliver impressive results in a challenging market.

“Our customers, our people, NUS, insurer partners and other partners we work with can be confident that we remain committed to our transformation programme, to looking after our customers and delivering growth in our core markets.”

It comes after Lloyds Banking Group took control of £15 billion worth of assets after acquiring Zurich UK’s pensions and savings business in October.

The move saw Lloyds’ Scottish Widows unit scoop up 500,000 customers to help “accelerate the development of its financial planning and retirement business”.

As part of the transaction, Zurich is receiving exclusive distribution rights to provide life protection to certain corporate clients of Lloyds’ commercial banking arm.

On the Endsleigh deal, Zurich’s UK CEO Tulsi Naidu, said: “Endsleigh will be part of a well-respected and successful broker business, and will be in very good hands.

“This is a positive transaction for all parties, including Endsleigh’s people and customers, and is a clear demonstration of how we are continuing to simplify our organisation and optimise our portfolio.”

Carl Shuker, A-Plan’s group CEO, said “We are looking forward to working with Jeff Brinley and his team on the next stage of Endsleigh’s development.”

A-Plan was snapped up for £300 million by private equity outfit HgCapital from Equistone Partners Europe in 2014.

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