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April 19, 2021

US insurers Core Specialty and Lancer to combine operations

Core Specialty Insurance Holdings, and its subsidiaries, as well as Lancer Financial Group, the parent of Lancer Insurance Company, have agreed to merge their businesses.

The stock-cash deal is Core Specialty’s first merger or acquisition since the recapitalisation of StarStone U.S. last November.

Transaction details

The deal combines Lancer’s specialty commercial auto expertise and Core Specialty’s diversified specialty P&C insurance offering.

The merged business aims to be the “leading specialty P&C insurer”. It will have more than $1bn in equity capital and around 550 employees.

Under the arrangement, Lancer shareholders will get a combination of Core Specialty common shares, preferred shares as well as cash.

Core Specialty noted that the newly issued Core Specialty preferred shares will convert into common shares following a Core Specialty IPO or “certain other specified events”.

The deal already secured the nod of the two companies’ boards. It now awaits regulatory approvals, with completion anticipated in the third quarter of this year.

Lancer will retain its brand, management team as well as operating locations.

Core Specialty expects the deal to be accretive to its earnings per share and return on equity in 2021.

Ohio-based Core Specialty provides property and casualty insurance products for small to midsized businesses.

New York-based Lancer serves businesses and commercial transportation companies. It focuses on auto liability, physical damage, cargo and general liability coverages.

Lancer co-founder and CEO Dave Delaney said: “Core Specialty’s management team is exceptional and our friendship with Jeff Consolino, Ed Noonan and members of Core Specialty’s Board goes back a very long way.

“I have no doubt Lancer and Core Specialty’s combined operating and financial resources will create tremendous growth opportunities for our shareholders, employees, policyholders and distribution partners.”

Leadership

Jeff Consolino will spearhead the merged entity in the role of president and CEO. Ed Noonan will remain Core Specialty executive chairman.

Delaney will have a seat on the Core Specialty board upon deal completion.

Lancer president and COO Matthew Jenkins will be the president of Core Specialty’s Lancer Division.

Consolino stated: Collectively and in each of our specialist niche business units, we intend to operate with strong entrepreneurial spirit and drive, speed, agility, and empowered decision-making.

“Lancer is a leader in the specialty transportation market with a long track record and a senior management team we know and admire. Lancer will operate as Core Specialty’s ninth specialty P&C business unit.”

Earlier this year, Texas-based independent insurance firm Higginbotham merged its operations with Oklahoma-based commercial insurance firm Vaughan Insurance Group.

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