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M&A weekly roundup: Risk Strategies, Argo Brazil, Inszone

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Let’s get you up to speed on some of this week’s key M&A deals.

Risk Strategies buys Joyce Insurance Group

Boston-based brokerage Risk Strategies acquired the operations and assets of Joyce Insurance Group, a public works-focused firm headquartered in Pittston, Pennsylvania.

The deal included the acquisition of Joyce subsidiaries Joyce Jackman Bell, and Joyce Haggerty Bell, two associated agencies with operations in commercial and personal lines, respectively.

Founded in 1955, Joyce has offices in Old Forge, Nanticoke and Allentown, Pennsylvania. The firm has focused its operations on municipalities, schools, excavators, transit authority, and public works-related firms.

Scott Popilek, Risk Strategies Atlantic regional leader said: “We saw in the Joyce Insurance Group a firm that was a great match with our approach in both their consultative client engagement and industry specialization.

Joyce Insurance president John Joyce said: “When looking for a partner to scale our business, Risk Strategies’ specialty approach and collaborative culture really stood out.”

Argo completes the sale of its Brazilian unit to Spice Private Equity

Argo Group completed the sale of its Brazilian unit, Argo Seguros Brasil, to Spice Private Equity, a local PE house.

The specialty insurer had announced the sale of its Brazilian operations to Spice in October, in a transaction of about $30mn.

Spice’s investments are managed by GP Advisors, a Bermudian subsidiary of GP Investments.

Argo’s president of international operations Andy Borst said: “The closing of this transaction is another definitive step as Argo evolves as a specialty insurer focused on US-based insurance risks.”

The sale came amid a wide-ranging turnaround project for Argo, which includes streamlining its operations. The company has already sold Ariel Re and its Italian business ArgoGlobal Assicurazioni.

World Insurance acquires Ciardiello Insurance Agency

World Insurance Associates struck a deal to buy Hamden, Connecticut-based Ciardiello Insurance Agency, for an undisclosed amount.

Ciardiello has operations in New Haven, Middlesex, Hartford, and Fairfield, offering personal auto, property and life products.

World Insurance CEO and co-founder Rich Eknoian said: “I am confident CIA will continue to be successful, and we will further increase our presence in the Connecticut market.”

Ciardiello principal Richard Ciardiello said: “As part of World, we will also continue to help our clients find the perfect combination of coverage and price to fit their unique needs.”

Inszone takes over Appling Insurance in California built out

Inszone Insurance Services acquired San Carlo, California-headquartered Appling Insurance, as part of its West Coast expansion plans.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 1976, Appling Insurance provides home, auto, winery and small business insurance across Sonoma County and the Bay area.

Inszone CEO Norm Hudson said: “California has been a great state for Inszone, and we are excited to continue growing and increasing our service offerings in all parts of the Golden State.”

“The team at Appling Insurance has done a great job of connecting and growing locally, and we are looking to continue their exemplary work under the Inszone Insurance brand.”

Choice Financial Group buys Indiana-based Marley Insurance Agency

Virginia-based Choice Financial Group sealed the acquisition of Marley Insurance Agency, marking its fourth acquisition since partnering with middle market-focused private equity firm Northlane Capital Partners, in October 2021.

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

Headquartered in Scottsburg, Indiana, Marley also serves the greater area of r Louisville, Kentucky as a full-service insurance agency.

Following the deal, Marley president Richie Buchanan will continue to lead the agency’s operations in the region.

Choice president Richard Braun said: “We are thrilled to be entering the Louisville market with Richie and his team.”

“Marley is an experienced insurance agency with an established presence in its market,” he added.

Other deals (from earlier this week)

Earlier this week, sister publication Insurance Insider revealed that Zurich Insurance Group put its $900-premium Australian P&C subsidiary Zurich Australian Insurance Limited (ZIAL) up for sale

Insurance Insider reported yesterday that Odyssey is making a fresh push to sell its London market and UK broking platform Tysers and is engaged in sales talks with potential suitors Austbrokers, Miller and Ardonagh.

One80 announced the acquisition of Professional Risk Solutions, a specialty wholesale brokerage firm that provides professional and management liability coverage.

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