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Proceeds to be used, in part, to fund Gallagher’s acquisition of the Broking Division of Wesfarmers Ltd., the largest acquisition in Gallagher’s history

Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy advised the underwriters in the $945 million common stock offering by insurance conglomerate Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.(NYSE:AJG), proceeds of which will be used, in part, to fund its acquisition of the insurance brokerage business of  Wesfarmers Ltd., one of the largest insurance broking networks across Australia and New Zealand.

Jim Ball
Jim Ball

Gallagher’s offering was comprised of 21.85 million shares of its common stock. The nearly $939 million purchase from Wesfarmers is the largest acquisition in Gallagher’s history.

New York-based Global Securities partner James Ball led the Milbank team representing the underwriters, which included Morgan Stanley & Co. LLCandMerrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc. The transaction closed on April 16, 2014.

In addition to substantially funding the contemplated acquisition, Illinois-based Gallagher may use some of the offering’s proceeds to fund previous acquisitions and for general corporate purposes.

Mr. Ball said, “We are very pleased to participate in this significant offering by Gallagher, which helps the company position itself for growth and expansion in Australia and New Zealand. Having not accessed the equity markets in the many years, Gallagher was able to price a rather large offering quite competitively, which points to strong investor interest in the company’s Oceania prospects.”

In addition to Mr. Ball, Milbank attorneys representing the underwriters included Global Securities associates Trevor Truman, John Ablan, and Donald Caravaggio; Tax partner Andrew Walker and associate Erika Hauser; and Intellectual Property partner Lawrence Kass.