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Principal Insurance has bolstered its strong organic growth with the acquisition of BikeTeam from iGO4 Partners Ltd.

The deal brings a book of 5,000 bike policyholders to the Manchester-headquartered specialist insurance group which also operates in the niche van, motor trade and classic, performance, kit and high performance car markets.

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iGO4 Partners has divested itself of its motorcycle arm in order to concentrate on its highly successful private motor, van and home insurance lines which comprise its core business.

“This is a very solid book which perfectly matches our market profile within the motorcycle niche,” commented Principal’s chairman, Damian Keeling. “We believe that in coming under the Principal umbrella, BikeTeam policyholders will secured added value by virtue of our specialist expertise and strength of our relationships with the key insurers operating in this space. It’s a good deal for all.”

The acquisition is the second to be completed by Principal in less than four months. In October the group announced that it had acquired Marsh’s Kendal-based specialist motor insurance broking business. Originally known as Peart Insurance Brokers the business operated a niche book of high value, performance and specialist car policies although Keeling cited the true value of the transaction coming from the expertise of the team who transferred to Principal under the terms of the deal.

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Both acquisitions complement impressive organic growth secured by the business. Management accounts for its last financial year (ended October 31, 2015) show annual premium income (API) grew some 50 percent, from £3.3m to around £5m. These figures include only a half-year revenue contribution from the group’s new Dublin office, which opened in April 2015, and a single month’s benefit from the Kendal acquisition.

Keeling forecasts that for the 2015-16 financial year the group will secure further growth of around 60 percent, with API set to hit £8m. The group’s organic expansion is being fuelled by increased investment in marketing and technology with its wider growth strategy set to continue embracing the acquisition of niche brokers and books.

“Principal is a dynamic and exciting business which is particularly well resourced for growth, not just financially but in the high calibre of staff that we have and continue to attract,” commented Keeling. “People within the industry appreciate our agility, our ability to identify and act upon opportunities, whilst people within the business appreciate that as a fast-growing company we offer opportunities for meaningful career development.”

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Tony Carter

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