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WMS Group acquisition completed by Opteven

Opteven’s acquisition of WMS Group has been formally completed after gaining approval from The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Europe’s second-largest Mechanical Breakdown Insurer (MBI), based in Lyon, France, completed its move to acquire the business-to-business car warranties provider on January 8.

John Colinswood will remain as WMS Group as managing director and Martin Quail will become chief executive.

A statement issued this week stated that the WMS Group brand name will remain in place “to support a determined unshakable commitment on ensuring it’s business as usual”.

Collinswood said: “When the original announcement was made last September, we had already started the process of restructuring our business, which included investing in our IT platform and encouraging new talented people to join us on our growth journey. All of which has already benefited our dealers and their customers alike.

“With Opteven’s support we plan to create new and exciting products to continually support our dealer partners. In addition, Opteven now also provides incredible career and development opportunities to the team at WMS.

“Overall, I’m am extremely delighted with this news.”

As a leading provider of business-to-business car warranties in the UK WMS Group currently has an established network of over 3,500 dealers using its products and “ticked all the boxes required to become part of the Opteven family”, according to a statement issued by its leadership team this week.

Opteven already has an established operational presence in UK as it manages the approved used warranty programme on behalf of Volkswagen Financial Services UK.

Strategically, Opteven has ambitions to continue to grow their presence throughout Europe.

With an award-winning warranty provider now part of their group, the company will aim to realise its ambitions.

Colinswood said: “2019 was a great year for the WMS Group, but 2020 will be even better. Confirmation of the acquisition by the Opteven Group is only the start, there is so much more in the pipeline that will revolutionise the warranty sector in the UK.”

Quail, Opteven’s chief executive for Northern Europe, said: “We´re thrilled that the great people within WMS Group have now joined the Opteven family.

“Over the past few months we have been continually impressed by the WMS Group during this process. The official signing today is the culmination of many months of hard work by both parties. We are really looking forward to what will be a truly exciting future for both organisations.

“Opteven Group will invest heavily in WMS Group and its people to ensure this brilliant business, full of talented people, continues to flourish and deliver a fantastic service to UK dealers and their customers.”

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