ONE of the region’s longest-established marine insurance businesses is in new hands.
Sunderland Marine Mutual Insurance Company Limited (SMMI) has joined forces with the North of England P&I Association (North) to create The North Group, one of the largest marine insurance operations in the world with total assets of $1,500million.
The two companies formed a strategic alliance in January 2012 and entered into a merger agreement in December which has now been granted approval by The Prudential Regulation Authority.
Sunderland Marine will remain an independent regulated company but is now part of the North Group.
Chief Executive Geoff Parkinson said: “Regulatory approval is the final piece in the jigsaw.
“This is the confirmation that two years of hard work has all been worth it. This is the key to exploring new opportunities and giving security to members, policy holders and staff.”
North joint managing director Alan Wilson added: “The merger combines North’s international portfolio of high-quality, larger tonnage with SMMI’s wide spread of high-volume, small-tonnage risks and aquaculture expertise.
“Together we will offer a more diverse product range, identify and develop new sources of business income and provide greater levels of service.”