BOSTON, July 24, 2018 (Business Wire)–NewStar Financial Inc. (“NewStar”), the alternative credit group of First Eagle Investment Management (“First Eagle”), announced today that it served as lead arranger and administrative agent for senior credit facilities provided to World Insurance Associates LLC (“World Insurance” or the “Company”), a leading specialty insurance broker focused on mid-sized businesses and high net worth individuals. The credit facilities consisted of a revolving line of credit, which was undrawn at closing, and a combination of funded and delayed draw term loans. The transaction also included an accordion feature, which could significantly increase the size of the facilities at the Company’s request subject to lender approval.
The initial proceeds from the financing were used to fund several small acquisitions and refinance existing debt, leaving significant undrawn borrowing capacity available to support the Company’s future funding needs related to its growth strategy.
World Insurance co-founders Rich Eknoian and Phil Nisbet stated, “We are excited to complete this financing with NewStar as they have the right capabilities to support our business plan based on a deep understanding of the insurance brokerage sector.” They added, “The ongoing relationship with NewStar ensures that we have ready access to the resources needed to deliver on a growth strategy that includes an expanded geographic footprint and the addition of new products.”
Headquartered in Tinton Falls, NJ, World Insurance is a leading privately-owned, full-service insurance agency offering commercial and personal property and casualty insurance, as well as employee benefits. The company was founded in 2011 by its current partners to acquire independent insurance agencies, and has completed 31 acquisitions since then. World Insurance currently employs a staff of 171 and serves over 30,000 customers across 46 states through 17 offices.
"We are excited by the opportunity to back another independent insurance brokerage firm focused on a successful strategic growth plan,” said Jason Wendorf, a senior banker at NewStar. “Rich, Phil and their team have built one of the leading independent insurance agencies in the United States. We are thrilled to partner with them on this important transaction, which provides significant financial flexibility and access to additional capital to support planned growth generated organically and through acquisitions." The NewStar deal team for the transaction included Robert Milordi, Marty Loew, Luke Psyhojos and Robert Allan.
NewStar Financial Inc. is the alternative credit group of First Eagle. Founded in 2004 and acquired by First Eagle in 2017, NewStar is an established credit investment platform with approximately $4.7 billion of assets under management and $1.9 billion in assets under administration (as of June 30, 2018) across a series of funds employing direct lending and liquid credit investment strategies. The group leverages its direct lending and credit management capabilities to offer a range of investment strategies focused on middle market loans and liquid, tradeable credit. As a direct lender focused on the middle market, NewStar is a leading provider of flexible financing options to private equity-backed companies. The group offers a complete range of financing alternatives used to fund acquisitions, working capital, growth strategies and recapitalizations. Since its inception, NewStar has worked with more than 250 different private equity firms on more than 600 transactions totaling over $13 billion of financing commitments. For more information, please visit www.newstarfin.com.
About First Eagle
First Eagle Investment Management is an independent, privately-owned investment management firm headquartered in New York with approximately $113 billion* in assets under management (as of June 30, 2018). Dedicated to providing prudent stewardship of client assets, the firm focuses on active, fundamental and benchmark-agnostic investing, with a strong emphasis on downside protection. Over a long history dating back to 1864, First Eagle has helped its clients avoid permanent impairment of capital and earn attractive returns through widely varied economic cycles—a tradition that is central to its mission today. The firm’s investment capabilities include equity, fixed income, alternative credit, and multi-asset strategies. For more information, please visit www.feim.com.
*Includes approximately $5 billion in AUM from its affiliate NewStar Financial.
About World Insurance
World Insurance Associates LLC is an independent insurance agency headquartered in Tinton Falls, NJ. It offers extensive, cost-effective personal and business insurance solutions in 46 states. The company specializes in transportation, hospitality, self-storage facilities, construction (surety), manufactures, and law firms. World Insurance Associates also provides group benefits and property and casualty insurance to companies of all sizes in a variety of industries in addition to insurance services for individuals, focusing on coastal properties and high net worth clients. World Insurance Associates began business in 2012 and serves its customers from 18 offices in NJ, PA, NY, CT, RI, ME, OH and FL. It has completed 31 acquisitions and has current run rate revenue over $30 million. The company is ranked #20 on the list of New Jersey’s 2017 50 Fastest Growing Companies, #6 in New Jersey’s Top Insurance Brokerages, and has been named to the 2018 Inc.5000 list.
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