Germany's Ecclesia Group buys Rotterdam based insurance broker

16 October 2018 4 min. read

Gebr. Sluyter, a Dutch insurance broker, has been acquired by Ecclesia Group, a Germany insurance and professional services firm with over 1,500 employees across Europe. The deal sees all of Gebr. Sluyter’s approximately 50 employees transfer to the new German parent. 

With offices in eight European countries, Ecclesia Gruppe is a pan-European insurance broker. The group is the parent of several local companies – specialist brokers and consulting firms that advise on risk management matters. In the Netherlands, Ecclesia Gruppe has two subsidiaries – Concordia de Keizer (Rotterdam) and Finance & Insurance (Amsterdam) – which combined employ around 125 professionals. 

Jochen Körner, Managing Director of Ecclesia Group, describes the addition of Gebr. Sluyter as a “logical step”. He stated; “For some time now the Ecclesia Group has been targeting to become one of the best and the largest market participants in the sector of marine and transport insurance. Together with our subsidiaries in Belgium and the Netherlands we are capable of providing excellent service to the various harbors and logistic companies. Through the takeover we can deliver a wide an intelligently combined product range of services and can thus further increase our service to our customers."

Founded in 1920, Gebr. Sluyter is a specialist broker in the field of marine and transport insurances. From its base in Rotterdam, the company helps its clients with analysing and mitigating risks, providing consulting and support services from risk management to hedging management. “We are proud that we are joining forces with a very strong and powerful partner and we are confident that it will provide us the platform to continue our growth,” said Babbert Diesel, Managing Director of Gebr. Sluyter. To demonstrate its commitment in the new setup, the management of the Dutch company has committed itself to remain within the company 'for several years', said Diesel. 

Ecclesia Group buys Rotterdam based insurance broker

Harry Kampschöer, CEO of Concordia de Keizer, an insurance broker that offers insurance, employee benefits, and financial and risk management, commented: “We are excited about this transaction and the chances it brings for our group.” 

M&A advisors

The deal between the Dutch and German companies was advised on by M&A experts from four professional services firms based in the Netherlands. Buyer Ecclesia Group was supported by M&A consultancy PhiDelphi Corporate Finance (deal team: Harald Miedema, Wouter Goedknegt and Aart Bijkerk) and law firm Ploum Lodder Princen (Albert Wiggers, Casper Schnepper). Reflecting on the deal, Harald Miedema, a partner at PhiDelphi, said, “This transaction fits in the consolidation trend in the insurance brokerage market. We believe Ecclesia has created an interesting platform for further growth.”

The transaction marks PhiDelphi’s fourth transaction in the financial services sector in eighteen months, he highlighted, with one of those being for the same client. Three months ago, Ecclesia purchased Finance & Insurance, a specialist in the field of credit insurance and financing solutions – PhiDelphi provided buy-side advisory to the German group. “We highly appreciate PhiDelphi’s creativity, flexibility and dedication demonstrated,” remarked Kampschöer. 

Seller Gebr. Sluyter tapped the services of Squarefield, an Amsterdam-based M&A consultancy, for due diligence work, with the deal team consisting of Matthijs Dekker, Paul Huizinga and Lukas Lambregt. CorporateWise, a legal consultancy firm that specialises in M&A support (deal team: Valérie Staal, Jelle Menalda van Schouwenburg and Maaike Janssen) assisted with legal matters.

Earlier this year in the Dutch insurance market, Aegon acquired Robidus in a deal estimated to be worth just under €100 million. The deal was advised on by M&A consultants from Deloitte, OC&C Strategy Consultants and PwC.