Erinaceous, the troubled property services group has lost 20 staff to Europe’s largest independent insurance intermediary Towergate. Daily Telegraph

Defectors from its insurance arm, which provides cover for commercial property, include the division’s managing director, Andy Halstead, and the director of insurance and underwriting, Nick Crocker.

Other key members of the sales and underwriting teams to leave include sales director Wayne Tonge.

Towergate executive chairman, Peter Cullum, said: “We were approached by these staff on the basis that Erinaceous has destabilised and staff members are seriously concerned and no doubt looking to secure their personal futures.”

The defections come as Fursa, the activist hedge fund with a near 19% stake in Erinaceous, seeks to oust deputy chairman Neil Bellis and chief operating officer Lucy Cummings.