private equity

JAB tightens grip on US pet care market with insurance deal

JAB Holding has tightened its grip on the booming US pet care industry with a $1.4bn investment in Fairfax Financial Holdings’ pet insurance business, a week after US regulators raised concerns about the European private equity firm’s growing influence in the American veterinary market.

JAB has acquired stakes in two companies from Fairfax, taking over its interests in Crum & Forster Pet Insurance Group and Pethealth in a deal announced on Monday.

The investment comes a week after regulators at the US Federal Trade Commission intervened in JAB Consumer Partners’ acquisition of SAGE Veterinary Partners, forcing the JAB investment vehicle to divest its veterinary clinics in Texas and California to prevent it from forming local monopolies. JAB must also give notice to the agency for future clinic acquisitions.

JAB began acquiring US veterinary clinics in 2019 and has since moved into the $2.8bn North American pet insurance market, challenging rivals such as Mars and Nestlé. In-force premiums in the sector more than doubled between 2018 to 2021, according to the North American Pet Health Insurance Association (Naphia).

Stuck at home during lockdowns, Americans increased spending on pets, with ownership growing from 67 per cent to 70 per cent of US

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Change Is On the Way. Law Firms Are Getting Ready

Faced with inflation, a looming recession and increased global regulation, law firms are looking at a lot of uncertainty. Even those still enjoying high demand for their services and basking in the increased profits and revenue they’ve experienced in the past year, know that change is likely on its way. So they are getting ready, taking steps they hope will insulate them from whatever is to come.

There are many ways to prepare for the big changes ahead but perhaps the most dramatic step a law firm has recently made took place last week in Australia. There, the fast-growing firm Wotten + Kearney, which specializes in insurance law, announced it is selling a 30% stake in the firm to a private equity company.

The law firm, which has 57 partners and more than 300 lawyers, wants to raise money to expand geographically—both in Australia and in Asia. It also wants to attract top talent, capture new market opportunities and invest in legal tech. It could have raised money by listing on a stock exchange—a move taken by other firms, both in the U.K. and in Australia. Or it could have pursued traditional financing. But instead, Wotten + Kearney did what

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