Inigo Ltd., a new London-based insurance group, announced it has completed a capital raise of approximately $800 million from a consortium of global investors. Former Hiscox executives are beyind the initiative.
Those investors include participants from funds controlled by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), Enstar, J.C. Flowers & Co., Oak Hill Advisors, Qatar Investment Authority, Stone Point and Inigo’s management team. With money in hand, Inigo expects to have the capital base required to open for business on Jan. 1, 2021, subject to approvals from the Corporation of Lloyd’s.
Inigo is founded by Richard Watson, former chief underwriting officer of Hiscox who stepped down from the group last year after 33 years, along with Russell Merrett, former managing director of Hiscox London Market, and Stuart Bridges, former chief financial officer of both Hiscox and ICAP.
Sir Howard Davies, chairman of NatWest Group, has been appointed Chairman of Inigo. Sir Howard has a distinguished career in the City of London, business and government. He was chairman of the Financial Services Authority from 1997 until 2003, director of the London School of Economics from 2003 until 2011, and chairman of Phoenix Group from 2012 until 2015.
As part of its preparations, Inigo also announces that it has signed an agreement to acquire certain insurance underwriting assets of StarStone Underwriting Ltd., including its Lloyd’s Syndicate 1301 and its managing agency, from Enstar Group, subject to regulatory approvals. (This deal was first announced on Nov. 18 by Enstar).
These are intended to form the foundation for Inigo’s operations as a specialty insurer, writing a streamlined portfolio of insurance and reinsurance risks. Inigo said it is targeting a number of underserved sectors of the London insurance and reinsurance market.
No legacy underwriting will be transferred to Inigo.
In a statement, Inigo said that current conditions are ideal to launch a new insurance business, at a time when demand across a number of classes of insurance and reinsurance is high.
Inigo has chosen London as its principal base since it regards the overall insurance ecosystem offered by Lloyd’s as exceptionally attractive and believes it will best support the growth and development of the new syndicate.
“This significant capital raising, together with our acquisition, gives us the platform we need to turn Inigo from a concept into reality. We believe that 2021 will mark the beginning of an exciting growth phase for Lloyd’s and the London insurance market and Inigo will contribute to growing the specialty and reinsurance marketplace, as it returns to profitability,” commented Watson.
“Sir Howard Davies joining our board validates our vision for Inigo and our determination to provide credible additional capacity and services to customers and brokers,” he added.
“We are fully supportive of the direction that John Neal, Lloyd’s CEO, is taking the market, making it a more attractive and efficient place in which to trade. For a company like ours, entirely focused on underwriting, London also has the depth of young talent we need to develop the analytical and data-led approach that is at the core of what we hope to do,” Watson said.
Inigo was advised on the transaction by Evercore, Guy Carpenter Securities and Clifford Chance.
*A version of this story ran previously in our sister publication Insurance Journal.