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Specialty insurance distribution firm XPT makes first acquisition

IBR Staff Writer Published 06 November 2017

XPT Group has acquired WSS, a wholesale broker and MGA including Western Security Surplus Insurance Brokers, and its MGU program division West-Pro.

The move is part of XPT's plan to develop wholesale insurance broking and underwriting agency in the country’s specialty insurance sector. BP Marsh owns 35% stake in XPT.

Established in 1981, WSS has been serving retail agencies in areas of general liability, package liability, DIC, property and other policies through contracts with US and Lloyd’s markets and through open market wholesale brokerage.

WSS is a family-run business and was founded by Richard Polizzi. He will step down as the chairman of but will continue with the company as a new program is being readied for launch.

Nephew of Richard Polizzi, Kyle Stevens took over as the president of the company in 2008 and has secured majority of interest in the company in 2014. He will continue with his designation, after the acquisition with XPT is closed.

WSS president Kyle Stevens said “Hats off to Richard for building a company with a team of experienced and talented staff and I am glad Richard will remain part of WSS to pursue new programs with us.

“It’s important to our clients that XPT is committed to the wholesale business model and is not acquiring retail brokers and agents. The capital provided by XPT and the expertise of its founding partners gives WSS exactly what we need to offer more products to our customers.”

XPT was founded by Swett & Crawford former CEO Tom Ruggieri and Jeff Heath who founded Heath XS before selling it to Hallmark and Mark Smith, an executive with RT Specialty, AmWINS and Stewart Smith. 

XPT Group CEO Tom Ruggieri said: “WSS serves a blue-chip client list with unique product offerings through a team of highly-experienced underwriters supported by dedicated staff and new technology. We have long admired what Richard Polizzi has built and are lucky to be able to add Kyle Stevens to our partnership.”

The transaction is said to have completed on October 31 and WSS stated that it will continue to operate under its brand name and that the acquisition will not affect it.


Image: Newly formed XPT acquires WSS to expand in specialty insurance sector in the US. Photo: Courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.