Liberty Mutual Insurance has acquired Ironshore, a global specialty insurer.

With the acquisition, Liberty Mutual will combine most of its existing US business with Ironshore’s US specialty lines under the Ironshore brand.

It will make the company the sixth-largest writer of excess and surplus lines in the US, Liberty Mutual says in a statement.

David Long, chairman and CEO of Liberty Mutual Insurance, says: “The combination of our two operations will create a top tier US specialty insurer with a broad and deep set of solutions for clients and brokers. For Liberty’s worldwide operations, Ironshore becomes an ideal complement to our US$5bn global specialty business by providing additional scale, expertise, innovation and market relationships.”

There will be no changes to Ironshore or Liberty Mutual’s international businesses. Both will continue to operate with its existing brands, management teams and business strategies. Kevin Kelley, Ironshore’s current CEO, will continue to head all Ironshore operations, and report to Long.

The combined US specialty organisation will be led by Shaun Kelly, Ironshore president and CEO of Ironshore US, who will report to (Kevin) Kelley.

Commenting on the acquisition, Kelley says: “Ironshore’s profitable specialty lines business will further bolster Liberty Mutual’s specialty markets platform, while Liberty Mutual’s strong balance sheet presents Ironshore opportunities to innovate additional product lines and to access greater insurance underwriting capacity. Ironshore looks forward to working with the Liberty Mutual family as we expand upon our specialty classes of business and heighten our established corporate brand in markets worldwide. Liberty Mutual’s global reach and admirable reputation offer Ironshore deeper resources to drive strategic growth.”

Ironshore has approximately 800 employees located in 15 countries worldwide, and is organised into three major operating hubs in the US, Bermuda and London.