L&E completes buyout from parent

Christopher Taylor has completed a management buyout of London & European, purchasing the remaining 90% stake from the firm\'s former parent group April.

Taylor had a 10% stake in the firm, but he says that with the global market downturn, France-based April had different needs to L&E and a deal was struck to buy the remaining stake from the firm.

No figure has been released on how much the remaining stake was sold for.

Taylor says: “L&E has had a great partnership with April since 2001, but it has different needs and we reached an amicable agreement to take the business from it.”

L&E launched its title insurance product in 1994, allowing borrowers and lenders to protect themselves against losses arising from problems or defects with the ownership or legal title of a property.

It has since added products such as Complete Conveyancing, titlesolv.com and electronic identity verification.

April says the disinvestment of L&E meets the group’s strategy to focus its business on its traditional wholesale brokerage model.

On its website, April says L&E was consolidated in the group’s scope in 2001 and that it was heavily affected by the economic crisis in 2008, with sales of 4.1m (3.6m).

Taylor says the buyout frees up the 14-person company to continue with its programme of investment that it claims will see it branch out into new product offerings such as professional indemnity insurance for solicitors.

He adds: “Like all insurance businesses April is dealing with issues in its own market, which meant we had slid down its priority list in terms of letting us achieve our ambitions.

“This is a great opportunity to enter a marketplace as it can only go up. For those businesses that are prepared to continue investing they will be stronger in the long run.”

He adds: “We are seeing preliminary green shoots and everyone should be upbeat because the market will improve.”