Driving Hastings forward 01424 205481

Hastings Direct is set to join the ranks of insurers listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE), which is expected to value the firm at up to 1.5bn. In a statement that was issued Tuesday it announced its intention to float on the FTSE index of the LSE next month.   It plans to raise £180 million through a listing on the LSE, using the proceeds to reduce debt and strengthen its capital base.

Hastings Direct was founded in 1997 with just 50 employees, with a large base in Bexhill and other offices in Newmarket and Leicester it is now one of Britain’s fastest growing motor insurance businesses.

The firm is led by chief executive Gary Hoffman, who ran Northern Rock after the bank was rescued by the Government.  He stands to benefit in the float plans, from the boost to the value of equity he holds and potential performance-linked share awards.

US investment bank Goldman Sacs will also enjoy a huge return less than two years after ploughing in £150 million to what was then a loss making business employing around 750 people. It will also sell at least a quarter of its holding shares.

This is also good news for Hastings Direct employees, who also stand to benefit through schemes that will see them receive shares worth hundreds of pounds each.

The company is aiming to expand its number of customer accounts from 1.9 million to 2.5 million by the end of 2017.

Hastings Direct will join the likes of Admiral, Direct Line and Esure on the stock market at a time when the broader insurance is witnessing a deluge of takeover activity.  The group has seen rapid growth over the last three years with the number of live customer policies growing at a compound rate of 22.5% across that period.

 

Hastings Insurance Group, one of Europe’s fastest growing insurance businesses and home to well known brands such as Hastings Direct who are based in Collington, near Bexhill and who are a major employer in the area today announced that following receipt of appropriate regulatory approvals, it has completed the transaction announced on 8 October 2013, with Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division acquiring 50% of the voting share capital of the Group.

Goldman Sachs Completes Hastings Insurance Investment

Goldman Sachs Completes Hastings Insurance Investment

Gary Hoffman, Chief Executive of Hastings Insurance Group, said:

“We are delighted to welcome Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division as a new shareholder and look forward to working to deliver our clear strategic plan and to continue providing refreshingly straightforward insurance.

Sumit Rajpal, Global Head of Financial Services investing for Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division, said:

“We are pleased to have formally completed the transaction. We remain extremely impressed by the quality of the Hastings management team and are excited about the prospects for the business as it enters the next stage of its growth.”

This kind of direct investment in to the area is great for the whole area.