“Changing the name over the door of a business without detriment to ongoing profits requires a real focus on customer service post deal.”
Born in Silverdale Staffordshire, Kevin was the only male member of his family to buck the trend of working in the coal mining industry in four generations. Instead, urged on by his father, he spent his working life forging a career in the Insurance Industry.
He received his grounding at Norwich Union in a graduate trainee programme in what was to be his first and only salaried position. Following Norwich Union, he became self-employed with a move into sales in the insurance broking sector.
He enjoyed early success working for a national motor broker cross-selling life insurance and mortgages to the firm’s client base. By his mid-twenties, his leadership qualities were recognised and he gained various sales management positions as Regional Manager for Criterion Life, Royal Life and subsequently Lincoln National, heading up successful sales teams in the North West of England.
1990 saw Kevin make his first move into Private Medical Insurance (PMI) sales; taking up the position of North West Sales Manager with Standard Life Healthcare. It was in PMI that Kevin would make his mark, orchestrating the launch of the sales forces of both AVIVA and WPA. All positions were commission based, relying entirely upon the sales made by himself and his team to generate income.
First Business Venture
In 1996 Kevin achieved an ambition to own his own business when he co-founded Berkeley Morgan Healthcare and Universal Provident, a virtual insurer underwritten by French underwriters Group APRI. From their Blackburn base, over a six-year period Universal Provident and Berkeley Morgan grew substantially to become amongst the largest and most respected firms in the individual PMI sector. By then Kevin had recruited a team of over a hundred salespeople, generating over £15 million in premium income. The success of this venture lead Berkeley Morgan Group to a stock market listing and a subsequent sale to Milton Keynes based Personal Group in a multi-million pound deal.
‘Berkeley Morgan was the foundation for me as a Businessman. I developed from being a good salesperson and sales manager to having a real understanding and passion for the fundamentals of what makes a business successful. I was determined to put these skills to good use in my next venture’
Launch of Chase Templeton Group
In September 2002 Kevin and his wife Julie founded Chase Templeton Group Ltd from their base in the Isle of Man. A head office function was established in Blackburn, utilising many of the staff and salespeople from his previous firm. Following an initial acquisition to provide agencies and critical mass to commence trading, Chase Templeton’s strategy was firmly bedded in organic growth driven by their sales teams. Like Berkeley Morgan the focus was Private Healthcare but this time with a bias towards the corporate sector. Alongside organic growth Kevin set about consolidating the highly fragmented PMI broking community. He deployed his own cash coupled with bank finance to purchase competitor firms absorbing their client banks into Chase Templeton’s highly effective back office set up.
In addition to its internal customer service team of some 200 staff, Chase Templeton expanded to have the largest base of Appointed Representatives in the PMI sector with over 30 firms choosing to utilise the services of the Chase Templeton compliance umbrella in what was by then a highly regulated marketplace.
In February 2013 Palatine Private Equity took a stake in the business and Kevin stepped up to Chair the Group. Cash injection by both Palatine and Kevin fuelled a ‘war chest’ for expansion.
Operating from its 3 bases in the Isle of Man, Blackburn and Bridgwater, organic and acquisitive growth was impressive. Some 86 competitor brokers were acquired, premium income topped £150m for the year ending October 2016 producing an EBITDA of circa £10m. Chase Templeton were by then the largest independently owned PMI broker the UK.
Late in 2016 an offer was accepted from a Private Equity backed trade buyer for the entire share capital of Chase Templeton and the sale successfully concluded in June 2017 at a figure that was reputedly the highest price ever paid for an Independent Private Medical Insurance Broker in the UK.