Group’s owner acquires one of NZ’s largest brokers

AUB Group (owners of NZbrokers) has acquired one of New Zealand’s largest brokers – the current Insurance Broker of the Year, Runacres and Associates – from IAG. The group has arranged the deal through its 80% owned entity AUB Group NZ Ltd, making the announcement this morning.

AUB Group CEO and managing director, Mark Searles, who is also chairman of AUB Group NZ, said the move was further evidence of the targeted expansion strategy AUB Group had for New Zealand.

“Runacres is a high performing broking business with a strong track record of sustainable growth over the past five years,” Searles said. Representing almost NZ$50 million GWP, 5,300 clients and with 30 staff across Christchurch, Auckland and Greymouth, Runacres is one of the largest brokers in New Zealand with a portfolio spanning corporate, commercial and personal clients.

Along with AUB Group’s existing equity interests, the group now directly represents NZ$200 million in GWP in New Zealand. On top of that it owns NZbrokers, which manages the largest cluster group of brokers in New Zealand. In total, either directly or through its partners, the group now represents NZ$550 million of GWP and is the third largest broking entity in the New Zealand market, the company said.

Keith McIvor, managing director of AUB Group NZ, told Insurance Business that not only was it great for the New Zealand market, it was great for Runacres too. “It puts the ownership of Runacres with a broking company ownership structure which you would hope can present it with more scale and more opportunity to grow. “I think it’s great for the people of Runacres because they are able to continue, under David Crick’s leadership, with their culture and their way to support their clients and grow the business.” McIvor confirmed that there would be no changes to the business at all.

“I would like to call this an ‘and’ strategy. We love this business and we think everyone within it has done an exceptional job. We would just like to support those people in the business and David Crick in his leadership role to continue to grow.” He added that there was likely to be more acquisitions to the Group in the future. “We still have a very healthy appetite for quality broking businesses to join us through our equity partners,” he said.

David Crick said he was ‘elated’ to be further strengthening their relationship with AUB Group NZ. “I am confident that this partnership will provide my team with an effective platform for continued growth,” he said.