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Nephila backed White Bear (Blenheim) raises £80m from Alchemy Partners


White Bear Capital, the holding company of Blenheim Underwriting and a Lloyd’s focused insurance and reinsurance underwriting operation that counts ILS specialist Nephila Capital as a key strategic investor, has added £80 million more in funding from special situations focused investment house Alchemy Partners.

blenheim-underwritingWhite Bear Capital intends to continue to pursue a third-party capital backed approach to its set to expand insurance and reinsurance platform, counting insurance-linked securities (ILS) funds as suppliers of capital that augment its underwriting capacity, as well as other investors.

When Blenheim launched its syndicate 5886 at Lloyd’s in 2016, Director Peter Scales told us that Nephila Capital would be, “the largest single contributor to a syndicate stamp that is comprised entirely of third party capital ranging from traditional Lloyd’s names to sophisticated ILS funds.”

Today the holding company White Bear Capital, which is largely owned by its staff and Nephila Holdings Limited, has announced an investment of £80 million into the group.

Alchemy Partners, a well-known and London headquartered investment house focused on debt and equity special situations, has made the £80 million investment into White Bear Capital from its Alchemy Special Opportunities Fund IV.

Alchemy is taking a substantial stake in White Bear Capital, joining ownership alongside the staff and existing strategic investor Nephila.

Peter Scales, chairman of White Bear Capital, commented on the news, “We are delighted to team up with Alchemy, who know our trading model really well as a cornerstone investor. Our intention is to remain firmly in the third party capital business. We see this transaction as aligning our interests more closely with our ongoing and prospective new capital and capacity providers, who, we hope, will continue to grow with us as we move into an ever more positive trading environment.”

Dominic Slade, managing partner of Alchemy, also said, “We are delighted to be partnering again with Peter and his team. Not only do industry commercial conditions feel right on the underwriting side but people and capital are on the move. White Bear is a flexible business model which aims to match the best underwriting talent with the best capital. It seems to us that the White Bear team are in the right place at the right time to be positioned for profitable returns on a high quality business.”

The company aims to put the new investment to bring onto its balance sheet exposure to Blenheim Syndicate 5886 and also to provide working capital for progressing the group’s MGA business, White Bear Managers.

Alchemy had previously partnered with many of the White Bear team at Lloyd’s managing agency Cathedral.

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