Barings, one of the world’s leading asset management firm, announced that it acted as mandated lead arranger of senior secured credit facilities to support the acquisition of the UK insurance brokerage Lark Group by Bowmark Capital LLP-backed Aston Scott.
The combination of Aston Scott, a leading provider of commercial insurance products to small and medium-sized enterprises in the U.K. market, and Lark’s specialized capabilities will create one of the U.K.’s top 20 independent commercial insurance brokers and employee benefits practices with 600 staff placing more than £250 million in gross premiums from 18 offices across the U.K.
In addition to senior secured unitranche funding, Barings is also providing a committed acquisition facility to help fund the future growth of Aston Scott, which Bowmark initially backed in 2015 as part of a management buyout.
“Bowmark is pleased with the close partnership Barings’ global private finance group provided in supporting this important milestone for Aston Scott,” said David Torbet, partner at Bowmark. “The team’s speed in responding to our requests and flexibility in meeting our needs contributed greatly to the timely completion of the transaction.”
“Barings appreciates the opportunity to partner with Bowmark again on Aston Scott’s investment in Lark Group, and we look forward to continuing to build our relationship,” said Mark Wilton, managing director in Barings’ London-based European private finance group. “Aston Scott has built a strong franchise and high customer loyalty by providing value-added advisory services to its clients, and with Lark’s capabilities and Bowmark’s partnership we believe the company is well positioned for rapid growth in the highly fragmented U.K. insurance brokerage market.”