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Sedgwick to buy rival Cunningham Lindsey

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Sedgwick Claims Management Services Inc. has agreed to buy London-based loss adjuster and claims management firm Cunningham Lindsey Group Ltd., the firms announced on Wednesday.

Details of the transaction, which is expected to close in 2018, were not disclosed.

David North, Sedgwick’s president and CEO, said in an interview that the transaction significantly increases the firm’s international presence.

“Cunningham Lindsey has ... gone through an amazing transformation as a company. They brought in a new leadership team at the corporate level about three years ago and they’ve done an outstanding job of getting that company in leading positions in a variety of places around the world,” he said.

Cunningham Lindsey has about 6,000 employees in 600 offices in 60 countries, according to a statement announcing the deal. It offers a range of claims services, including pre- and post-loss; third-party claims administration, global account management, forensic engineering, and restoration and repair consulting.

Memphis-based Sedgwick has about 15,000 employees in about 275 offices located in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom and Ireland. Cunningham Lindsey will complement its Vericlaim unit, the statement said, which Sedgwick bought in 2014.

Mr. North said there will now be about 7,000 employees, or about 25% of the company’s business, in the scope of property loss adjusting services.

“Joining forces with Sedgwick and Vericlaim presents an opportunity to provide our clients an end-to-end service solution around the world,” said Jane Tutoki, global CEO of Cunningham Lindsey, in the statement. “Our vision is to align our complementary services and further grow the reach to a scale that will help redefine the expertise and talent we can offer.”

Both firms are private-equity owned.

In December 2012, Cunningham Lindsey and a CVC Capital Partners led investor group, including Allied World Assurance Company Ltd., announced the completion of a recapitalization where funds affiliated with CVC acquired majority ownership of Cunningham Lindsey, according to Cunningham Lindsey’s website.

Sedgwick’s majority shareholder is Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P.