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BGC Partners Completes Acquisition of Besso Insurance Group

  • Leading Lloyd's of London Insurance Broker
  • Complementary Property & Casualty Business

BGC Partners, Inc. (NASDAQ: BGCP) ("BGC Partners", "BGC" or "the Company"1, a leading global brokerage company servicing the financial and real estate markets, today announced that it has completed the acquisition of Besso Insurance Group Limited ("Besso")2, an independent Lloyd's of London insurance broker with a strong reputation across Property, Casualty, Marine, Aviation, Professional and Financial Risks and Reinsurance.

Shaun D. Lynn, President of BGC Partners, commented on today's announcement: "We are delighted to complete the purchase of Besso, a company with a great reputation, a strong record of growth and an excellent management team that will provide our insurance brokerage business with a strong foundation."

Furthermore, Christopher Smith, a BGC executive, will join the Besso Board of Directors to work with the existing management team and drive the strategic growth plan.

Transaction Details

Under the terms of the agreement, an affiliate of BGC has acquired 100 percent of Besso for a total consideration of up to £70.5 million on an enterprise-value basis. The purchase price is to be satisfied by a mix of cash and BGC stock, to be paid in full only if certain performance targets are met.  For the years ended December 31, 2015 and 2016, Besso generated revenues of approximately £38 million and £45 million, respectively3.  BGC expects the acquisition to be immediately accretive to distributable earnings per share upon closing4.  Besso had approximately 100 front-office employees as of year-end 2016.

BGC Partners is a leading global brokerage company servicing the financial and real estate markets. BGC owns GFI Group Inc., a leading intermediary and provider of trading technologies and support services to the global OTC and listed markets. The Company's Financial Services offerings include fixed income securities, interest rate swaps, foreign exchange, equities, equity derivatives, credit derivatives, commodities, futures, and structured products. BGC provides a wide range of services, including trade execution, broker-dealer services, clearing, trade compression, post trade, information, and other services to a broad range of financial and non-financial institutions. Through brands including FENICS, BGC Trader, Capitalab, and BGC Market Data, BGC offers financial technology solutions, market data, and analytics related to numerous financial instruments and markets.

Real Estate Services are offered through brands including Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, Newmark Cornish & Carey, ARA, Computerized Facility Integration, NGKF Valuation & Advisory, and Excess Space. Under these names and others, the Company provides a wide range of commercial real estate services, including leasing and corporate advisory, investment sales and financial services, consulting, project and development management, and property and facilities management.

BGC's customers include many of the world's largest banks, broker-dealers, investment banks, trading firms, hedge funds, governments, corporations, property owners, real estate developers, and investment firms. BGC's common stock trades on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the ticker symbol (NASDAQ: BGCP). BGC also has an outstanding bond issuance of Senior Notes due June 15, 2042, which trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol (NYSE: BGCA). BGC Partners is led by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Howard W. Lutnick. BGC, BGC Trader, GFI, FENICS, FENICS.COM, Capitalab, Swaptioniser, Newmark, Grubb & Ellis, ARA, Computerized Facility Integration, Landauer, Lucera, and Excess Space, Excess Space Retail Services, Inc., and Grubb are trademarks/service marks, and/or registered trademarks/service marks and/or service marks of BGC Partners, Inc. and/or its affiliates. Knight Frank is a service mark of Knight Frank (Nominees) Limited.

Statements in this document regarding BGC that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. Except as required by law, BGC undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements. For a discussion of additional risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see BGC's Securities and Exchange Commission filings, including, but not limited to, the risk factors set forth in the most recent Form 10-K and any updates to such risk factors contained in subsequent Forms 10-Q or Forms 8-K.

Founded in 1967, Besso offers insurance broking services across a number of divisions including Property, Casualty, International, Marine, Aviation, Professional and Financial Risks and Reinsurance. The firm covers its markets globally from its headquarters in London, with additional overseas offices in Turkey, Brazil and Hong Kong. Besso Limited, the Lloyd's of London registered broker and Optex Group Limited, both wholly owned Besso subsidiaries, are Authorized and Regulated in the United Kingdom by the Financial Conduct Authority. The Turkish subsidiary, Besso Sigorta ve Reasürans Brokerliği Ltd, the Brazilian subsidiary, Besso Re Brasil Corretora de Resseguros Ltda and the Hong Kong subsidiary, Besso (Asia Pacific) Limited are regulated in their respective countries.

1 via certain of its affiliates 
2 and certain of its associated entities and subsidiaries
3 Besso's 2016 results are unaudited. 
4 See the sections of BGC's most recent financial results press release titled "Distributable Earnings Defined", "Differences Between Consolidated Results for Distributable Earnings and GAAP", and "Reconciliation of GAAP Income (loss) to Distributable Earnings" for the complete definition of these non-GAAP terms and how, when and why management uses them, as well as for the differences between results under GAAP and distributable earnings for the periods discussed in that document.