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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 30th July 2021

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Insurance News

Travel Insurance Facilities (TIF)has confirmed it has temporarily stopped selling travel cover to new customers after its German InsurerUnion Reiseversicherung (URV)paused new sales. The Managing General Agent has partnered with URV since 2003 and according to its website it also underwrites travel insurance on behalf of White Horse Insurance Ireland.

Extinction Rebellion has protested atLloyd’s of Londonagain over the market continuing to cover fossil fuel projects. On the 28th July at Lloyd’s of London’s HQ (1 Lyme Street, London, UK), an activist from Insurance Rebellion was arrested after throwing a bucket of green paint over the front of the building. Insurance Rebellion said it carried out this escalation in its campaign to “highlight the shameless greenwashing being carried out by Lloyd’s of London, who continue to insure fossil fuel projects across the world”.

In further news...the world's largest insurance market, Lloyd's, has launched a climate action plan to help the insurance industry work with critical industries to support and accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy. According to Lloyd's, the insurance industry has a global capital pool of over $30 trillion. In addition, the cover it extends to organisations worldwide supports and enables the entrepreneurialism, innovation and investment required to accelerate the world's transition to a more sustainable future.

Specialist PI and political violence MGAInperiohas reported that it has more than doubled its line size for UK Terrorism risks to £250m per location. This follows an update to its Terrorism and sabotage insurance proposition which the MGA announced earlier this year.

QlaimsCEO Liz Latter has described the Managing General Agent’s expansion into Personal Lines as a “logical step” for the future of the business. The MGA expanded into Personal Lines with the launch of a home product which it said can be offered as ancillary cover by Personal Lines Brokers or embedded into a home policy wording.

Sabrehas reported a GWP of £78.2m for the first half of 2021, a drop on the £86.9m reported in the same period last year. The COR was 74.4% (H1 2020: £71.7%) and profit after tax came in at £18m, a reduction on the £22.5m reported in 2020.

Insurtech firmCDLhas reported a turnover of £52.7m for the full year to 30 September 2020. According to a filing on Companies House, this is a small decline on the £52.9m posted in the preceding year. The business has however doubled its pre-tax profit to £11.6m in 2020, up from £5.3m in 2019.

Global specialty insurance providerThomas Miller Specialtyhas established a new Construction business. The new Thomas Miller Specialty Construction (TMSC) unit will build on Thomas Miller’s years of expertise within latent defect insurance and will operate exclusively on a Broker distribution model. TMSC will deliver a “market leading latent defect offering” for mixed use and tenure developments within the UK, a company release said.

Global reinsurerConduit Holdings Limited (CHL)has announced its results for the first half. The company reported estimated ultimate premiums written of US$333.1 million and gross premiums written of US$210.3 million.

The knowledge gap on Cyber insurance could result in mis-selling and poor customer outcomes, rising stars of the underwriting profession have warned. TheChartered Insurance Institute’sNew Generation Underwriting Groupsurveyed 78 insurance professionals in March and April 2020 and found more than half felt their knowledge of Cyber risks was virtually non-existent despite their employer providing cover.

Global commercial insurance prices increased 15% in the second quarter of 2021, according to theGlobal Insurance Market Indexreleased by Marsh. It’s the 15th consecutive quarter of rate increases in the global commercial insurance market. It also marks the third consecutive quarter to show a fall in the average rate of increase and follows year-on-year average increases of 18% in the first quarter and 22% in the fourth quarter of 2020.

AXIS Capital Holdings Limitedhas announced financial results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2021. Commenting on the second quarter 2021 financial results, Albert Benchimol, President and CEO of AXIS Capital, said: "Our core underwriting results were strong, as evidenced by this quarter’s current year ex-cat combined ratio of 88.7%. Our continued progress in underwriting performance provides tangible proof that our efforts to reposition our portfolio are delivering meaningful improvements."

On 26 July 2021 at Southwark Crown Court, His Honour Judge Tomlinson sentencedIan James Hudsonto 4 years’ imprisonment for one count of fraudulent trading, with two additional terms of 14 months, each reflecting a breach of s19 FMSA, to run concurrently following his earlier guilty plea. This followed charges laid by the FCA namely carrying on a business,Richmond Associates, for a fraudulent purpose and carrying on regulated activities when not authorised or exempt.

Swiss Rehas turned things around with its interim financials, reporting a net income for the Zurich-headquartered group in the first half following a loss in the same period in 2020. “We are very pleased with the improved profitability achieved by the group in the first half of this year,” commented Swiss Re Group Chief Executive Christian Mumenthaler.

Having established a leadership, innovation and distribution strategy and continuing to restructure its US operations,Brit LimitedCEO Matthew Wilson is now reaping the rewards with a strong start to 2021. “Against the ongoing backdrop of COVID-19 and the impact it continues to have on every aspect of life, the progression of our business is testament to the dedication of our people and the unique culture we have created at Brit,” he said.

It’s the turn ofArthur J. Gallagher & Co. (AJG)to reveal how it fared in the second quarter and first half of 2021 – a year which Chair, President, and Chief Executive Patrick Gallagher, Jr., believes is poised to be a “fantastic” one.

Allianz Insurancehas made its first round of donations from the Allianz Sports Fund, benefiting 42 sports clubs across the country and totalling £50,000.

Global investment in the insurance technology sector totalled US$7.4 billion in the first half of 2021, setting an all-time high and exceeding full-year investment in 2020 and in all previous years, according to a report byWillis Towers Watson (WTW).

We are fast approaching the IDEX's Lands End to John O'Groats bike ride, raising money for mental health charity 'Fight for All the Feels'. We have recruited 10 brave souls to undertake the challenge, with representatives from Partners&, NFU Mutual, Aviva, Gymshark, Broker Network, Mitie and Geo Underwriting. If you'd like to support their efforts, follow the link where you can make a small donation, and if you'd like more information contact Rebecca Howarth -

Sponsorship link:

Mergers & Acquisitions

Tasker Insurance Grouphas purchased Altricham-basedInsure Risk, subject to regulatory approval. The deal, for an undisclosed sum, is Tasker’s first since it was itself bought by the Jensten Group in June. A move which added £50m in GWP to the new parent.

Gallagherhas confirmed that its deal to buy certainWillis Towers Watson (WTW)operations for $3.57bn (£3.53bn) has been called off. The agreement was first announced on 12 May and at the time it was described as an “important step” toward closingAon’sproposed $30bn deal for WTW. However, the Aon/WTW merger collapsed after the two businesses “reached an impasse with the US Department of Justice”, which launched a civil antitrust lawsuit to block the deal in June.

Movers & Shakers

CFChas namedGraeme Newmanas its new Chief Executive Officer. Newman was previously Chief Innovation Officer at the Managing General Agent and the business noted that Founder and current CEO,Dave Walsh, will assume the role of group CEO.

TheArdonagh Grouphas announced the appointment of former Ulster, Ireland and British & Irish Lions Captain,Rory Best, as Director of Development.

PremFinahas appointed ofSharon Bishopas UK & Ireland CEO and created an international division. Bishop joins after 17 years at Close Brothers including seven years as CEO of Close Brothers Premium Finance (CBPF).

Brokers have stated they were unsurprised byAllianz’smove to separate its Commercial and Personal Lines businesses, after the provider revealed a restructure earlier this month. However, as part of the changes, the Insurer announced thatSarah Mallaby, Director of Broker Markets (Commercial and Personal),Chris Little, Director of Engineering, Construction and Power,Gary Davess, Director – Specialty and Direct andNeil Clutterbuck, Chief Underwriting Officer, will be leaving the company.

EsureappointedPeter Simonas Chief Trading Officer, with effect from 1 October. He will also be a part of the Esure Group Executive. Simon joins from Centrica, where he has been running British Gas residential and small business Energy supply, including setting up its new Energy platform business and brands.

Lloyd’sannounced the appointment ofMark Sedwill, Baron Sedwill of Sherborne, to Lloyd’s Council and to the role of Senior Independent Director and Deputy Chair of Lloyd’s. Lord Sedwill succeedsAndy Haste, who has been Lloyd’s Deputy Chair and Senior Independent Director for the past nine years. His appointment remains subject to regulatory approval.

Pet insurance providerBought By ManyappointedLidia Oshlyanskyas Chief Product Officer. Oshlyansky brings over 20 years’ experience working for global tech brands including Spotify, Google, and Nokia.

Aon, which abandoned its $30bn merger deal to buy WTW earlier this week, has shared its new leadership structure. Julie Page is to remain as Head of Aon’s UK business following a group-wide leadership restructure.

International specialty reinsurance MGARokstonehas announced the launch of a specialist Agriculture division for the US market, part of the company’s continued expansion in North America. The new division, Rokstone Agriculture Risk Underwriters, will be led by underwriting specialistEric Conklin

All information provided in this Market Digest has been gathered from multiple General Insurance Media sources and individual company press releases.