Expat Marine insurance acquired by Howden Group
Headed by Colin Dawson, Expat Marine will benefit from “broader reach” of UK-based conglomerate, which has offices in Europe, Middle East and Asia-Pacific.
Expat Marine, one of Asia’s leading yacht insurance brokers, has been acquired by the Howden Group, which operates in 45 countries and employs over 9,000 people. Headquartered in London, Howden’s marine division has over 160 staff in offices across Europe, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East, as well as access to a network of international partners.
Expat Marine’s Colin Dawson, a yacht insurance broker based in Hong Kong since 1994 with 25 years of specialist experience in the Asia-Pacific market, said the acquisition would benefit both the yacht industry and owners by combining both companies’ knowledge, experience and relationships.
“I have partnered with Expat Marine since 2009 and through this time our book of business has grown to over 250 yacht clients through 20 countries. While the hardening insurance market has presented its challenges, our portfolio continues to grow and we continue to look after all manner of yachts – large and small, cruising locally and worldwide,” said Dawson, a creator and the founding Chairman of APSA (Asia-Pacific Superyacht Association).
Colin Dawson is one of Asia’s most experienced yacht insurance brokers
“The successful partnership I have enjoyed with Expat Marine will continue with Howden. It allows us to benefit from Howden’s reach in the market, have greater access to global insurers and join a network of Howden offices. We will be working with Howden’s office in Hong Kong as well as regional offices, so will be able to offer greater levels of service throughout the Asia Pacific.”
Howden’s other recent acquisitions include UK and Antibes-based Sturge Taylor & Associates (STA Group), an independent superyacht insurance broker, along with sister STA Group company Fastnet Marine Insurance Services (Southampton). Another recent acquisition is Aston Lark, which encompasses London-based CRS Yachts, another specialist superyacht insurance broker.
Julian Franzman, Howden Specialty’s Head of Marine for Asia-Pacific, said: “The Expat Marine acquisition will strengthen the overall offering for our marine clients and reiterates Howden’s ongoing strategy of empowering local teams to partner with firms with a shared culture to enhance our client offering across the globe.”
Dawson added: “With Howden’s recent acquisitions in Europe, the acquisition of Expat Marine will only serve to strengthen our relationships with insurers, thereby our offering to clients. Working with Howden’s established teams in Europe allows for an easier navigation of what is a very difficult insurance market for yachts, increasing the availability of good-quality cover where many are pulling back.
“The acquisition also enables teams at Howden to access my 25 years of specialist yacht insurance experience in Asia and to assist growth in areas of the Asia-Pacific.
“I’m excited about the opportunity this change brings as I hope it allows us to create better, more stable programmes for clients in what is currently a very difficult insurance market. With a broader reach, I’m confident this change will allow us to present a more complete package to yacht owners and the surrounding yacht industry, allowing us to offer better value to them.”
Howden was founded in London in 1994 and operates across a range of insurance lines, with employees making up the largest shareholding group. Howden Group places US$11 billion premium a year into international insurance markets on behalf of clients that now include some of the world’s largest companies, governments and financial institutions.
Boat fires in Hong Kong have compounded a difficult time for both the yacht insurance market in Asia and owners, who need sound advice to navigate a complicated period for coverage, writes Colin Dawson.