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Steadfast considers holdings in German network’s brokers

Steadfast says its acquisition of a minority stake in Hamburg-based unisonBrokers may pave the way for equity holdings in suitable brokers in the network.

The global group will be renamed unisonsteadfast after the deal, with the acquisition facilitating access to international markets for Steadfast Network brokers and underwriting agencies.

The medium-term strategy includes developing new revenue streams by providing additional products and services, while Steadfast would also consider acquiring stakes in suitable brokers, according to a presentation delivered to analysts in Sydney and Melbourne last week.

unisonBrokers, which earns membership fees, has a similar structure and management culture to Steadfast Network.

The German group, one of the world’s largest general insurance broker networks, assists with transactions, compliance and reporting across borders, and it provides some products and services to brokers.

Its 200 brokers operate in 130 countries and handle about $US17 billion ($22.4 billion) of gross written premium.

Steadfast says in a statement that the strategic acquisition involves an “immaterial consideration paid” and will have a minimal impact on short-term revenue and earnings.

The group also says it is continuing to roll out its network model in New Zealand and Asia, where it is targeting Singapore, and is pursuing growth strategies for its underwriting agencies.

The Underwriting Agencies of Australia (UAA) business, acquired from QBE in 2015, has operations in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, with Canada next for international expansion.

“Expansion opportunities also include Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines, all UAA-branded,” Steadfast says.

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