Firedart says business as usual as Lireas buys stake

08 December 2011 Firedart Engineering Underwriting Managers / Compass Insurance

Firedart Engineering Underwriting Managers, a specialist engineering underwriting management agency for Compass Insurance, has announced that its Cape Town branch has sold their book of business to Etana following acquisitive interest from the insurer. The rest of the business continues to operate as usual and following the move, Firedart has also obtained a new shareholder.

According to Mike Tandy, Managing Director of Firedart, the sale to Etana only affects business underwritten by the Cape Town branch. “The approach was for the whole of Firedart but the decision taken by the shareholders was not unanimous. We decided to compromise as some members of the Firedart team decided they wished to sell their stakes.”

He says the difference in opinion was split between Cape Town and the rest of the business so it was a relatively easy and amicable process. “While it is flattering to receive an approach, we strongly believe that Firedart has great potential as a standalone company and therefore decided to continue with our own strategy.”

Firedart have great plans for the year ahead and look forward to providing further updates in the New Year and continuing to grow their position as South Africa’s leading engineering underwriter.

Mike says that following the move, Lireas Holdings, the strategic investment arm of Hannover Re Africa, has also purchased a 48% stake in Firedart. “We are very pleased to have Lireas as a shareholder of Firedart, given the access to reinsurance capacity through Hannover Re. This is a huge vote of confidence in the Firedart business and we are extremely excited about the opportunities going forward.”

Firedart recently won the Compass Insurance Combined Ratio Award - given to a UMA with the lowest combined ratio for the past three years (2008 – 2010) - in the over R50m gross written premium (GWP) category.

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