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Lloyd’s Group Buys Into Encino Insurance Firm

An Encino specialty insurance firm has sold a 49 percent stake in itself to a Lloyd’s of London subsidiary interested in its growing business selling cyber security policies. NAS Insurance Services, which reported premiums in excess of $75 million last year, was acquired by Tokio Marine Kiln Group Ltd. for a reported $37.1 million. NAS, which brokers and underwrites legal expense, health care, entertainment and other products, has seen interest in its decade old cyber security insurance rapidly grow, said Jeremy Barnett, senior vice president of marketing for NAS. “Kiln is seeing that trend and seeing our product as a market leader so they are investing further in our growth based on that sector,” he said. Companies in the health care industry are most interested in such coverage, followed by retail, which underwent much scrutiny in the past year when Target Corp. of Minneapolis and Neiman Marcus Group of Dallas experienced massive data breaches and harmed their trust among consumers. “Although it is one of the more under-reported types of crimes, major breaches like the one Target faced last year and other major companies have brought it more attention,” said Pete Moraga, spokesman for the Insurance Information Network of California. “Also, keep in mind that as more companies, large and small, move to cloud data storage services, the potential for cyber breaches will increase.” According to the Consumer Sentinel database, maintained by the Federal Trade Commission, online or data breaches accounted for 15 percent of identity fraud cases from claims filed in 2010 to 2012. Not all data breaches come by means of hacking or theft. In many cases, businesses need to insure employees who could potentially lose a laptop with patient or customer information, for example, Barnett said. NAS also was attractive because the company has seen major growth in recent years. The company has expanded from 40 to 108 employees since 2010 and experienced 40 percent year-over-year in top-line revenue growth for the last three years, Barnett said. In addition, NAS has sold Kiln insurance since 1975, Barnett said. “This is strictly the result of a longstanding 30-year relationship with Kiln. This will move this partnership forward,” he said. NAS will retain its existing brand and management structure under Kiln, and the remaining 51 percent of the business will be retained by existing shareholders. The sale closed in late February. “We will continue to capitalize on NAS’ high-quality underwriting capabilities, strong management team and proven track record of generating profits, as we continue to enhance our distribution capabilities in strategically important territories around the world,” said Charles Franks, group chief executive of Tokio Marine Kiln, in a statement.

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