Charlesbank to invest in WIA

Charlesbank Capital Partners has agreed to make a majority investment in Tinton Halls, New Jersey-based World Insurance Associates, an insurance brokerage.

Charlesbank Capital Partners has agreed to make a majority investment in Tinton Halls, New Jersey-based World Insurance Associates, an insurance brokerage. No financial terms were disclosed.

PRESS RELEASE

TINTON FALLS, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–World Insurance Associates LLC (“WIA”, “World”, or the “Company”), a leading full-service insurance brokerage, announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement to receive a majority investment from funds affiliated with Charlesbank Capital Partners (“Charlesbank”), a middle-market private equity firm based in Boston and New York. The WIA management team and employee shareholders will remain major shareholders alongside Charlesbank.

Founded in 2012, WIA offers comprehensive insurance coverage, risk management strategies, and benefits consulting services for businesses and individuals. The Company focuses on property and casualty lines, and has built centers of excellence in specialized industries such as transportation, hospitality, self-storage facilities, non-profits, and construction. WIA operates 40 offices in 11 states and has grown through a combination of organic growth and agency acquisitions, with 53 completed to-date. The growth investment from Charlesbank will enable WIA to accelerate its expansion program.

“Our team has worked tirelessly to establish World as one of the country’s fastest-growing insurance brokerages, with a reputation for excellent client service,” said WIA Chief Executive Officer Rich Eknoian. “With the benefit of Charlesbank’s extensive financial and operational resources, we are well-positioned to build on World’s foundation and to continue to grow organically and through targeted M&A. This investment will enable World to create new opportunities for our employees, further enhance services for our customers, and expand relationships with our carrier partners.”

“We are tremendously impressed by all that Rich and the World team have accomplished, firmly establishing World as an acquirer of choice among insurance brokerages,” said Michael Choe, CEO and Managing Director of Charlesbank. “We are excited to be the Company’s first private equity sponsor, and look forward to supporting Rich and the team in World’s next phase of growth.”

The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2020, subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Piper Sandler & Co. and Macquarie Capital (USA) Inc. served as financial advisors to WIA, and Evercore served as financial advisor to Charlesbank. Paul Hastings LLP provided legal counsel to WIA, and Goodwin Procter LLP provided legal counsel to Charlesbank. Macquarie Capital Principal Finance and Madison Capital Funding will provide debt financing for the transaction.

About World Insurance Associates
World Insurance Associates LLC is headquartered in Tinton Falls, NJ, and is a nationally ranked, full-service insurance brokerage providing world-class asset and lifestyle protection with insurance, risk management, and benefit consulting services for individuals and businesses. Since its founding in 2012, WIA has completed 53 acquisitions and serves its customers from 40 offices in 11 states. WIA has been named one of The Most Successful Companies in America by Inc. 5000, a Top 100 P/C Agency by Insurance Journal and Business Insurance, a five-time honoree by NJBIZ Fast 50, and a two-time Business Insurance Best Place to Work. For more information, please visit www.worldins.net.

About Charlesbank Capital Partners
Based in Boston and New York, Charlesbank Capital Partners is a middle-market private equity investment firm managing more than $6 billion of capital. Charlesbank focuses on management led buyouts and growth capital financings and also engages in opportunistic credit and technology investments. The firm seeks to partner with strong management teams to build companies with sustainable competitive advantage and excellent prospects for growth. For more information, please visit www.charlesbank.com.