IVCA Feature: New Member Profile of Lockton Companies

IVCA Feature: New Member Profile of Lockton Companies

May 25, 2016

The Illinois Venture Capital Association is expanding and evolving, as it continues its advocacy for the VC and PE industries. This expansion creates opportunity for new membership, as the whole association gets more options for networking and experiencing the depth of offerings from firms and support companies around Chicago and the Midwest. The latest new member is Lockton Companies.  Lockton is the world’s largest privately-owned independent insurance brokerage firm, and has a solid footprint in Chicago.

The following is a Q&A profile with Lockton Companies, which elaborates on their background and their anticipation for interacting with the IVCA.

New Member: Lockton Companies

Representative: Matthew J. de Nazarie, Vice President

IVCA: What is a brief history and background of Lockton Companies?

Lockton Companies: Although Lockton is the world’s largest privately owned insurance brokerage firm, clients most frequently describe us as team members who make their business better.  We were formed 50 years ago in Kansas City [Missouri] by our founder Jack Lockton.  From the humble beginnings serving clients in the construction space, to the current full scale risk management capabilities around the world, Lockton continually looks for ways to help businesses improve. 

At Lockton, we are passionate about serving our clients, developing our Associates, and giving back to our communities. We focus all of our global resources to do one thing – to help you make your business better.  We achieve this by improving your bottom line, managing your capital plus attracting and retaining talent, in addition to protecting your people, your property, and your reputation.  Our dedicated team of more than 6,000 Associates become partners with our more than 48,000 clients. Peerless in our approach, advice, innovation and impact, we offer our clients unparalleled access to experts around the globe.

IVCA: Why did the firm decide to join the IVCA?

Lockton Companies: Lockton does a significant amount of work with Venture Capital and Private Equity firms, as well as their investments. We seek to learn from other members how and where they are making investments, and what is driving these investments. 

IVCA: Insurance and brokering in that business is evolving rapidly. How does this evolution coincide with the advantages of working with an independent broker such as Lockton?

Lockton Companies: Though many people view insurance and risk management as a sleepy industry, there is ever-changing risk to companies.  This translates to new and innovative ways to address and manage corporate risk. Lockton aims to bring transparency and order to the often hazy, arcane process of insurance, as well as provide excellent advice to help our clients create competitive advantages. 

Lockton has a quickly growing VC/PE group known as PECAP (Private Equity and Corporate Acquisitions Practice), which provides risk mitigation strategies to the investments these groups make. Dynamic Capital Modeling, risk analytics, ERM, and cyber/IP analysis are just a few areas of risk that should be a part of any sound portfolio analysis, and have evolved substantially over the last five years. We are at the forefront of these, and many other risk categories, providing different and more rounded solutions to our clients, and their investments. 

IVCA: Which services, of the many offered through your companies, do you think would best suit the Venture Capital and Private Equity industries, given all the activity in these types of investments?

Lockton Companies: It really is dependent on a number of factors. The short answer is that each investment is unique, and needs a thoughtful, tailored approach to managing exposure. This starts with a conversation...What are the goals and priorities of this investment in the near term?  How do you anticipate this to change over the life of the investment?  Where are you risk tolerant? The service we provide is the tailored suit approach – we’re not off the rack, and neither are your investments. We offer custom solutions to a highly customized space. 

IVCA: Where has your growth specifically taken place in the last 25 years, and how does that apply to the Venture Capital and Private Equity industries?

Lockton Companies: We continue our trend of double digit, organic growth in our company year after year. This has far outpaced our competition in an industry that often grows near GDP.  We have made very few acquisitions in our 50-year history, and as such, have accomplished this pace through hiring and keeping the right people, in addition to retaining our client base. We have industry leading measures – about 95% each – in both of those categories.

As it relates to VC/PE space, the same metrics apply, and we continue to grow tremendously in this area as we expand relationships with our partners in these firms. Our tailored solutions are scalable and accretive, which translates to big wins across the entire spectrum for our clients.  The idea is to put you in a better position to win.  Last year alone, Lockton’s PECAP teams across the country complete more than 500 transactions.

IVCA: What does Lockton Companies hope to achieve in their interaction with the IVCA?

Lockton Companies: We aim to help members of the IVCA and their clients, building up their investments to perform significantly better, and to help them think about risk in a new and different way.  Lockton Companies make it our priority to introduce our VC/PE clients to investments which may fit their portfolio appetite – ultimately enhancing those relationships –and providing value outside our everyday services.

For more information regarding Lockton Companies, click on Lockton.com. For information specific to the Chicago location, click on Lockton.com/offices/Chicago.