April 17 (Reuters) - AmWINS Group Inc, the largest wholesale insurance broker in the United States by premiums placed, said it reached an agreement with private equity company New Mountain Capital for a $1.3 billion recapitalization.
The deal will end AmWINS' relationship with buyout firm Parthenon Capital Partners LLC, which had bought a majority stake in the company in 2005.
Last month, Reuters had reported that Parthenon and AmWINS management, who jointly own the company, were looking for buyers and expecting a valuation of about $1.5 billion.
Alok Singh, Managing Director of New Mountain, said the firm was in talks with AmWINS' management for over a year.
Employee shareholders will continue to own more than 30 percent of the company's equity, which is valued at over $160 million, after the recapitalization, the company said in a statement.
The Charlotte, North Carolina-based company, which withdrew a proposed initial public offering in 2007, has grown aggressively through acquisitions and currently handles over $7 billion in annual premiums.
Financial Technology Partners, Goldman Sachs and Willis Capital Markets & Advisory acted as financial advisers to AmWINS. Credit Suisse and Macquarie Capital advised New Mountain.