Ripe Thinking Limited (“Ripe”), a UK-based digital underwriting and insurance distribution platform, is pleased to announce that it has entered into a definitive agreement for Aquiline Capital Partners LLC (“Aquiline”) to acquire a majority stake in the company. Aquiline is a private investment firm based in New York and London with $6.9 billion in assets under management, specialising in investments at the intersection of technology and finance. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Since its founding in 1997, Ripe has grown rapidly serving a variety of customers across both personal and small commercial lines. Today, Ripe is a leading insurtech business with more than 280,000 policyholders, protecting their specialised needs across golf, boats, caravans, and cycles, as well as providing insurance to small business owners such as personal trainers, musicians, and photographers. Ripe’s proprietary technology enables customers to “build their own policy”, providing tailored solutions in an optimised online journey. Its first-class customer service and innovation in insurtech have seen the business win multiple industry awards and achieve continuous and impressive growth. Over the past 12 months, it saw revenue grow by 27 percent.
Following this investment, Aquiline will work closely with the company’s management team to continue and accelerate the build of a market-leading digital insurance distribution platform. Ripe’s management team will continue to be led by CEO Paul Williams and Founder & Managing Director John Woosey, who will retain a significant equity stake, and Marketing Director Sarah Jones.
Jeff Greenberg, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Aquiline, said: “The way people buy insurance is changing. As more individuals turn to online platforms to purchase insurance, Ripe offers a simple process for buying policies online while still ensuring quality coverage at a good value. We believe that John, Paul, and their team have built a high-quality and scalable digital platform that can identify customer demands, and design and distribute products to address these efficiently. We are excited to partner with them through the next phase of their journey.”
John Woosey, Founder and Managing Director of Ripe, said: “We are excited to partner with Aquiline, whose deep understanding of the UK and global insurance markets, and their track record of supporting technology-enabled businesses will allow us to further develop our offerings to our customers and continue to build out our underwriting and distribution capabilities. This partnership is a testament to the work of our incredible team who have delivered our strong and consistent growth year after year. The investment will allow us to accelerate our ambitions for international growth while still effectively and efficiently serving our customers across the UK.”
Paul Williams, Chief Executive Officer of Ripe, said: “Aquiline is an ideal partner to support Ripe through our next phase of growth. The investment will allow us to further expand the capabilities of our industry-leading technology platform and reach customers through new and innovative channels. Aquiline and Ripe share a strategic vision for the company and I am excited to lead the business through its next phase of growth.”
Closing of the investment is subject to parties obtaining relevant regulatory approval.
Houlihan Lokey provided corporate finance advice and Norton Rose Fulbright provided legal advice to Aquiline. Due diligence was performed by Deloitte (financial, tax and regulatory) and Crosslake Technologies (technology).
Keefe Bruyette & Woods provided corporate finance advice and Ernst & Young provided legal advice to Ripe. Vendor due diligence was performed by Oliver Wyman (commercial) and KPMG (financial, tax, technology, operations and regulatory).