Edinburgh insurance broker Bruce Stevenson eyes acquisitions as revenue rises

The Edinburgh-based company, which has offices in Glasgow, the Borders and Turriff, has also revealed that it is in talks to take on top recruits and hopes to recruit more over the coming year, adding to an existing workforce of 110 people.

Chief Executive Edward Bruce said: “Our new owner gives us more firepower to drive growth through acquisition over the next 12 months and beyond.

“Essentially, our culture of customer focus and people development remains unchanged. The continued growth of the business has allowed us to make some exciting promotions within the company and more are expected in the coming months.

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Edward Bruce, CEO of insurance brokerage firm Bruce Stevenson, headquartered in Edinburgh. Photo: Stewart Attwood

The company, which provides insurance brokerage and risk management services, was acquired by UK and Irish insurance group Aston Lark in March 2021 and has since operated as an independent brand and separate legal entity.

Bruce Stevenson revenue and gross written premium (GWP) increased by 7%, with trading revenue up £600,000 to £8.7m, and GWP of £44m.

Bruce added, “We are delighted to report strong organic growth, in a challenging year with challenging business conditions for the company and the industry as a whole.”

Renewable energy and social housing represent the two most important sectors of the business, while the Scottish food and drink industry is a high growth market in which whiskey distilleries represented one of the fastest growing sub-sectors of the business, alongside independent accommodation.

Commercial work, real estate, private clients, art and agriculture and estates also remain key sectors for the firm.

Last month, Aston Lark’s Glasgow office merged with Bruce Stevenson’s Glasgow team – with around a dozen staff transferring to the latter. The Aston Lark Glasgow office recorded around £5m of GWP and £1m of revenue in 2021.

In its latest supplemental agreement, in 2018, Bruce Stevenson has bolstered its offering in Aberdeen and the North East with the acquisition of Turriff-based Youngson Insurance Consultants.

Peter Blanc, Aston Lark Group Chief Executive, said: “I am delighted to see the progress Bruce Stevenson is making despite difficult market conditions and we are excited about the new growth opportunities available to them, both organic in their specialties but also as they seek to acquire like-minded brokers in the Scottish market.

He added: “Edward Bruce and his team will build a broker that is the unrivaled leader in Scotland and we will do all we can to support them every step of the way.”

Bruce Stevenson was founded in 1981 by the father of its current CEO, David Bruce.

Aston Lark has 55 offices and some 1,800 employees in the UK and Ireland, serving over 200,000 customers, and placed over £1 billion in premiums in 2021 in the UK insurance market.

Like Bruce Stevenson, the firm is one of a select group of insurance brokers with Chartered Insurance Broker status.

Bruce Stevenson announced in October 2018 that he had acquired Youngson Insurance Consultants following the close of its latest five-year growth plan.

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