Howden acquires Silks Insurance, further strengthening its bloodstock expertise in the Pacific


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Sydney, 8 January 2024 – Howden announces that it has acquired Silks Insurance (Silks), an insurance broker specialising in the Australian bloodstock market. This acquisition enhances the scale, depth and expertise of Howden’s Sport and Entertainment specialty offering in the Pacific.  

Founded in 2020 by Stuart Doughty, Silks has grown rapidly as a bloodstock intermediary offering a comprehensive suite of equine industry solutions covering foals, weanlings, yearlings, broodmares, racehorses and stallions. 
This transaction follows Howden’s recent acquisitions of HQ Insurance in Australia and Tysers’ UK bloodstock broking business, and also the acquisitions of bloodstock Managing General Agencies Galileo and David Ashby Underwriting by Howden’s underwriting arm, DUAL. The acquisition of Silks represents another step in Howden’s strategy to be the leading equestrian insurance intermediary in the global insurance market. 

Stuart Doughty, Director, Silks Insurance said: “Howden is a global brand and they’re passionate about the equine sector all the way to the top. Silks’ clients will reap the benefits of Howden’s international platform and data and analytics capabilities as we continue our growth journey with them. Ultimately, Silks has been built on a loyal client base and the hard work of its experienced employees. Now it has the backing of Howden and its significant bloodstock insurance relationships in the UK, I can only see this as a positive for our clients in the future. It will be business as usual heading into the 2024 Magic Millions sale and we look forward to seeing all our clients and friends up there for the first sale of the year.”

Matt Bacon, CEO, Howden Pacific commented: “We are very excited to have been able to acquire Silks Insurance, as this represents the continued development of our bloodstock offering in the Pacific market. The Silks team has a wealth of experience and brings across market-leading talent who share the Howden commitment to bloodstock, as well as a passion for the equine world. We are delighted that such a talented team have chosen to partner with us and create an exciting equine business in the Pacific.” 

Duncan Fraser, Global Practice Leader, Sport and Entertainment, added: “We are building the capability and expertise to respond to our clients’ needs through industry, product, and geographical specialists linked together in a global practice. The addition of the Silks team significantly enhances our presence in Australia and is a major step in our strategy to be recognised by clients as the leading sport, media, entertainment and equine broker in the market.”

Howden is an official partner of Ascot Racecourse in the UK, and recently announced a three-year partnership with the Victoria Racing Club (VRC) as their official insurance partner. Howden’s sponsorship of the Melbourne Cup Carnival also reinforces its commitment to the horse racing industry in Australia.