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Bernhard Capital-led investor group to invest in Gray Surety

An investor group led by Bernhard Capital has agreed to make a significant investment in Gray Surety, a Louisiana-based provider of surety bonds to emerging and mid-market contractors.

An investor group led by Bernhard Capital has agreed to make a significant investment in Gray Surety, a Louisiana-based provider of surety bonds to emerging and mid-market contractors. No financial terms were disclosed.

PRESS RELEASE

BATON ROUGE, La. & METAIRIE, La.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Bernhard Capital Partners Management, LP (“Bernhard Capital,” or the “Firm”), a services and infrastructure-focused private equity management firm, and The Gray Insurance Company (“Gray Insurance”) today announced that a group of investors led by Bernhard Capital has entered into an agreement to make a significant investment in The Gray Casualty & Surety Company (“Gray Surety”), Gray Insurance’s surety market affiliate.

Gray Surety, established 2003, is a well-respected surety carrier headquartered in Metairie, LA that provides surety bonds to emerging and mid-market contractors. Gray Surety partners with professional bond agents to provide responsible surety bond options across the country. The Gray Surety team also underwrites commercial bonds related to licenses, permits, and other regulatory requirements.

Jim Bernhard, partner at Bernhard Capital, said, “We are excited to partner with the Gray Surety team. This insurance platform will serve as a natural extension of our construction and infrastructure expertise. Together, we will leverage Gray Surety’s reputation in the surety industry and Bernhard Capital Partners’ resources to grow capacity. The Gray Surety team’s proven reputation and strong track record in the surety industry reflects their dedication to their key values – values that align closely with ours at Bernhard Capital Partners. We are proud to support their growth and welcome them to our portfolio.”

Michael T. Gray, Chief Executive Officer and President of Gray Insurance, said, “We are proud of this partnership and excited about the growth potential it holds. This venture is well positioned as a pure-play surety company and will enable Gray Surety to write and support a much larger share of the market. Bernhard Capital’s interest in Gray Surety is a testament to the successful business the Gray team has built and we thank each individual for their efforts.”

Cullen S. Piske, President of Gray Surety, said, “This partnership brings together Bernhard Capital’s construction and infrastructure expertise with our construction focused credit business. Bernhard Capital’s substantial capital infusion represents an incredible opportunity to expand our capacity and we look forward to growing our business as we support our customers in a rapidly changing industry. At Gray Surety, our motto is ‘Let’s Get To Yes’ which reflects our creative approach to surety credit, but also impacts all levels of our operations. We will continue to provide the same exceptional level of care, professionalism and unique service-first approach to the surety bond experience.”

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

About Bernhard Capital Partners
Bernhard Capital Partners is a services and infrastructure-focused private equity management firm established in 2013 by Jim Bernhard, Jeff Jenkins, and a team of experienced private-equity professionals. Bernhard Capital seeks to create sustainable value by leveraging its experience in acquiring, operating, and growing services and infrastructure businesses.

About The Gray Casualty & Surety Company
The Gray Casualty & Surety Company is a trusted surety market headquartered in Metairie, LA. Since 2003, the company has provided contract and commercial surety bonds to emerging and mid-sized contractors across the U.S. Gray Surety goes beyond the bond with a service-first approach to support contractors and independent bond agents as they grow. Gray Surety has offices in Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, and Arizona.

About The Gray Insurance Company
Founded in 1977, The Gray Insurance Company is a family-owned, relationship-based, and service- focused insurance company admitted in 50 states. Offering workers’ compensation, commercial auto, general liability, and excess liability coverage, Gray Insurance’s program is designed to respond to overlapping state and federal jurisdictions and complex contractual arrangements. They are headquartered in southeast Louisiana and focus on the energy, industrial, and construction industries with an emphasis on the Gulf Coast and the southeastern United States.