Liverpool investment firm secures £1.14m deal in Canada

Formed late in 2020 by five experienced North West investment professionals late in 2020, Liverpool-based Arete is investing in a Canadian insurance underwriter. Tony McDonough reports

Arete founders, from left, David Moore, Simon Lord, Mike Fletcher, Ben Hatton and Matt Cheetham


Liverpool-based private capital investor Arete is investing more than £1m in a Canada-based insurance underwriter.

Arete, which was one formed by five experienced North West investment professionals late in 2020, is investing $(CAD)2m (£1.14m) in Toronto-based Shore Underwriting. It specialises in underwriting for the technology and professional services sectors.

The deal, which was led by Arete’s head of insurance services, Richard Bryant, and partners Mike Fletcher and Matt Cheetham, comes only weeks after its investment into Manchester’s decision intelligence and AI pioneer, Peak.

This latest investment will see Arete support Shore Underwriting in developing its distribution and service models for the industry in the North American market. Mr Bryant said: “This is a strategic investment for Arete which sees us expanding our current portfolio within North America.”

He added the cash injection would help bring “state-of-the-art automation” to a market sector that traditionally operates with outdated legacy operating systems.

“The transaction combined Arete’s vision of how the insurance sector will evolve, and Shore Underwriting’s knowledge of the territory and sector,” he said.

“Our investment will support Shore to realise its ambitions to become the ‘go to’ specialist professional liability market place within Canada with the ability to offer bespoke solutions and additional coverages such as directors and officers, cyber and general liability.

Mike Shore, president of Shore Underwriting, added: “The investment of capital by Arete will see Shore Underwriting able to deliver a professional liability marketplace which operates using the very latest technology.

“We felt that the partnership was right for us given the years of knowledge and experience that exists within Arete’s executive team and its commitment to not only providing capital, but also the network and support that makes organisations like ours a success.

Arete’s senior partners have a long-established track record of investing in the insurance space in the UK and US, having been founders and backers of PIB, EC3 Brokers and 1st Watch Global.

The firm’s initial team of 12 people are led by founding partners Mike Fletcher, Simon Lord, Ben Hatton, Matt Cheetham and David Moore. Its headquarters are in Liverpool city centre with a second base in Manchester.

With a number of deals in the pipeline Arete has already raised initial capital from investors. It will aim to provide what it calls “transformational private capital” to entrepreneurs and businesses across the North West

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