March 1, 2018 / 1:16 PM / 10 months ago

UPDATE 1-Insurer AmTrust to go private in $2.7 billion deal

(Adds background on accounting errors, CEO quote)

March 1 (Reuters) - U.S. insurer AmTrust Financial Services Inc said on Thursday it would be acquired in a $2.7 billion deal by a group of shareholders including its founding family, chief executive and private equity funds.

Evergreen Parent, an entity formed for the purpose of acquiring AmTrust, will pay $13.50 in cash per AmTrust share, representing a 12.8 percent premium to the stock's Wednesday closing price.

Evergreen Parent was formed by private equity funds managed by Stone Point Capital, AmTrust CEO Barry Zyskind and George and Leah Karfunkel, the family that helped found New York-based AmTrust.

The deal comes after a rocky year for AmTrust, which grappled with a series of accounting errors that forced the company to restate three years of earnings and sent its shares sliding to multi-year lows.

"As a private enterprise, we will be able to focus on long-term decisions, without the emphasis on short-term results," Zyskind said in a statement.

The deal is expected to close in the second half of the year. (Reporting By Aparajita Saxena in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar)

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