Oslo-based marine insurer Hydor has acquired competitor EF Marine in a move which adds to the recent consolidation trend in the fixed premium insurance market.

The combined company will be named Hydor and employ 34 people based in Oslo, Rotterdam, Hamburg Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai.

It will have an annual premium income of around $40m.

The merged company will focus on fixed premium P&I cover for both shipowners and charterers with limits of up to $1bn.

The company also has Freight, Defence and Demurrage services, and other marine covers including war energy, hull and machinery and cargo insurance.

Fixed premium insurance typically covers small and specialised vessels.

Both Hydor and EF Marine are managing general agents which offer marine insurance services backed by underwriting capital sourced from larger insurance groups such as Lloyd’s of London syndicates.

The fixed premium market has been going through a period of consolidation driven by Thomas Miller Specialty’s acquisition of a stable of fixed premium insurance providers, now backed by capital provided by the UK P&I Club.

The move is part of a growth plan for Hydor following its acquisition by the private equity investor Longship Fund II in April last year.

Longship will own the merged company with Hydor founder Johan Gjernes, Morten Skomsøy and Folkert Strengholt among its shareholders.

Hydor chief executive Morten Skomsoy said the two companies are a perfect fit as they are around the same size and do not have any overlapping accounts.

EF Marine chief executive Folkert Strengholt said: “From the moment we started our discussions with the Hydor management it was immediately clear our organisations share similar business principles, reflecting common risk understanding and appetite. The joined company will be well extremely positioned for the future, forming an even stronger partner for our mutual clients moving forward.”