Gallagher buys AHC

Jonathan Stapleton
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Arthur J. Gallagher has bought Anthony Hodges Consulting (AHC) in a bid to become a major global employee communications company.

AHC - a communications consultancy specialising in pensions and employee benefits - will become part of Gallagher Group's UK-based communications business.

The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

AHC was founded in 1996 and serves customers across the UK, US, and Australia from its headquarters in Wakefield and offices in Minneapolis and Melbourne.

Gallagher said AHC chief executive Roger Hattam and his colleagues would continue to operate from their current locations under the direction of Nick Burns, the chief executive of Gallagher's UK employee benefits consulting division.

Gallagher's communications practice is led by managing director Ben Reynolds. As part of his new role at Gallagher, Hattam will take a lead role in this team and be responsible for running the practice's three business units - AHC, Gallagher Communication and Gatehouse - as well as integrating them into a single practice.

AHC founder and chairman Tony Hodges will remain involved in the business in a senior advisory capacity.

The deal fits in with Gallagher's strategy to partner with entrepreneurial and specialist companies to help corporate clients make working life a better experience for all their people, inspiring them to deliver their personal and professional best.

Commenting on the deal, Burns said: "This acquisition supports our offering for clients, especially around organisational wellbeing, where powerful employee communications are so effective for talent attraction and retention.

"We have always greatly admired AHC's work and professionalism. They share our values of integrity, partnership and understanding and are a perfect fit for Gallagher in terms of people talent, solutions and creative innovation. Together we will expand our footprint in the UK, USA, and Australia as well as the route to market - strengthening existing specialisms, maximising client choice and working together on our vision."

Hodges added: "It was really important to us that we found a partner where we could maintain the family feel that our people and clients so value. It soon became clear in our discussions with Gallagher that we have found this, and that they also share our values of ‘doing the right thing' for our clients, colleagues and the community. This is what sealed the deal for us."

Gallagher is a global insurance brokerage, risk management and consulting services firm, headquartered in Rolling Meadows, Illinois and with operations in 42 countries worldwide.

The business was founded by Arthur Gallagher in 1927 and there continues to be a family presence on the board - with J. Patrick Gallagher, Arthur's grandson, currently serving as the firm's president, chief executive and chairman.

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