McGriff CEO Davis: Retailer’s growth trajectory to accelerate under new ownership

McGriff CEO Read Davis believes the retail broker’s expansion will accelerate under its new owners Stone Point Capital and Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), with the firm targeting double-digit growth next year.

In an interview with The Insurer TV, Davis said the deal will provide McGriff with financial liberalisation that will in turn allow it to better incentivise its brokers.

“We now have economic tools to help incentivise much more like our competitors,” he said. “So, there's an opportunity for those high achievers and successful people to achieve things that maybe they didn't think they could in the past.”

Private equity firms Stone Point and CD&R acquired McGriff as part of their acquisition of Truist Insurance Holdings, previously part of Truist Financial Corporation.

Davis said there were several advantages to no longer operating in the heavily regulated banking sector.

“It also allows us to bring in our own finance, accounting and IT people to focus on what we need to be doing, and not be dictated heavily by government organisations,” he said.

Partnering with private equity would “spruce up” McGriff’s balance sheet, he continued.

“Private equity changed the world of our business, right? The dynamic, the trajectory. We will be coming into the market with a story, with a clean balance sheet and a lot of things that maybe some others are struggling to clean up,” said Davis.

He believes this will allow for a leaner McGriff that has the agency to respond quickly to the whims of the insurance market.

“I think you'll see a company that's able to move a lot quicker. We will control our operations, we will control our business.

“So I think that the speed and the execution, the ability to drive growth in a way that we drive it versus having to get permission over certain things is going to be really important,” said Davis.

“We have heavy growth expectations for our partners. For us to max out on this opportunity for us, and for them, they're going to be expecting us to grow and it would be nice to find a way into double digits.

“We've got three or four different levers we can pull, both from hiring, recruiting, geographic and specialty knowledge, because we still have a lot of white space on our board, or places we can go. We have depth that we can build out into some of the platforms,” he continued.

This would track with the growth that McGriff saw in 2023, when it recorded double-digit new business generation.

Watch the full interview with McGriff CEO Read Davis to find out more about:

  • McGriff’s young performer and producer programme
  • How McGriff is building out its executive risk line
  • How McGriff added 75 new producers to the platform last year