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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 6th August 2021

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Insurance News

Registration for Dive In, the insurance industry’s longstanding festival promoting diversity and inclusion, opens today at midday. The event takes place from 21 – 23 September, this year’s festival will take on a hybrid format, consisting of both virtual and physical events in 30+ countries.

Hastings Group has reported a profit before tax of £76m for the six months ended 30June 2021. The provider noted that its gross written premium for the period was £481m and that it has 3.1m live customer policies, which it said was broadly stable compared to the year end.

Direct Line Group’s commercial division, including NIG, reported in-force polices of 850,000 for the first half of 2021, up from 785,000 in the same period last year. Its results document showed that NIG and other had 266,000 in force policies (H1 2020: 239,000). Commercial GWP grew to £336.1m (H1 2020: £289.3m) with NIG delivering £245.2m, up from £210.7m in the same period last year.

RSA Group has reported a loss before tax of £249m for the first six months of 2021, as well as an underwriting loss of £143m. According to RSA’s report to Investors these figures cover its continuing operations in the UK, Ireland, Europe and Middle East. The provider also revealed gross written premiums of £2.3bn, a total income of £1.8bn and net written premiums of £1.7bn.

Hiscox has reported a profit before tax of $133.4m for the first half of 2021, compared to a pre-tax loss of $138.9m in H1 2020. Gross written premium also increased to $2.4bn (H1 2020: $2.2bn), while the provider’s combined operating ratio improved to 93.1% (H1 2020: 114.6%).

Liberty Mutual Holding Company and its subsidiaries have managed a strong financial turnaround in the first half (H1) of 2021, reporting net income of US$1.625 billion, up from US$199 million in the same period of 2020.

Markel Corporation has recovered from the loss it suffered in the first half of 2020. Reporting its financial results for the three and six months ended June 30, 2021, the Richmond-headquartered insurance group said its comprehensive income to shareholders amounted to US$849.7 million (around £611.4 million) in the second quarter; H1, US$1.2 billion.

Mosaic Insurance marked six months of operations this week. The company has seen sustained growth in its six months of operation, including the opening of three key offices, the establishment of four strategic regional distribution hubs, making key hires and underwriting across six product lines worldwide.

Top UK life Insurer Legal & General Group Plc, which also specialises in Asset Management and Pension Risk Transfer, enjoyed a profitable first half. According to Legal & General, its profit after tax amounted to £1.07 billion in the first six months of 2021. In the same period last year, the corresponding figure stood at £290 million.

AXA has launched its STeP digital claims solution for Motor insurance, which the Insurer says will transform its online offering and provide additional choices for its customers. Described as a “self-serve, end-to-end digital claims experience,” STeP will allow AXA’s Direct Motor and Swiftcover customers to notify and track a claim online. Certain types of claims are automatically integrated with AXA’s suppliers, which will help customers with the repair or replacement of their vehicle, depending on the type of damage.

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

NFP, an insurance Broker and consultant that provides Property and Casualty (P&C), corporate benefits, retirement and individual solutions, has acquired Aiken Insurances Limited (AIL). Dublin-based AIL is a retail and commercial insurance Broker which specialises in Professional Indemnity / Directors’ and Officers’ liability insurance, complex Commercial Liability and Property risks, including Unoccupied Property, as well as the Leisure and Entertainment and Construction sectors.

Aston Lark has bought Kidderminster-based Plester Group for an undisclosed sum. The Plester Group, which was established in 1964 and has a team of 19, operates within both Commercial and Personal Lines insurance. According to its website, the Broker’s specialisms include Construction, Haulage, Motor Trade, Waste and Recycling, High Net Worth, Professional Sports, Unoccupied Property and Family Fleet.  

Barbon Insurance, which is part of PIB Group, has bought lettings software and systems specialist,Rent4sure, for an undisclosed sum. Rent4sure is an all-in-one lettings platform for UK agents providing specialist services and expert support alongside the latest referencing software, designed to help letting Agents grow their business with security and confidence.

High net worth Broker Gauntlet Insurance Services (Gauntlet), part of Global Risk Partners (GRP), has announced its first deal since it was acquired by GRP in 2019. Gauntlet has agreed to purchase 100% of the share capital of Bolton-based Three Sixty Insure for an undisclosed sum. According to GRP, Founder Sam Cowen, his wife Julie and the rest of the team will stay with the business under new ownership.

It has been revealed that Moody’s Corporation has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire RMS for approximately $2.0 billion (around £1.44 billion) from DMGT. RMS has over 400 risk models covering 120 countries and serves the global P&C insurance and reinsurance industries. The acquisition of the global provider of climate and natural disaster risk modelling and analytics services will immediately increase Moody’s insurance data and analytics business to nearly $500 million in revenue. The deal will accelerate the development of the company’s global integrated risk capabilities enabling it to meet the next generation of risk assessment.

Movers & Shakers

Russell Bence has been appointed Commercial Director a tThink Insurance, a specialist Broker based in the West Midlands. The move sees Bence move across from Complete Cover Group which he joined in 2019 as MD of broking.

Brokers have stated that outgoing Hiscox boss Bronek Masojada has built a good quality business during his 21 years at the helm. The provider announced last month that Masojada will be retiring from the role of Hiscox Group Chief Executive Officer at the end of this year. John Sims, Chairman and CEO of Vizion Insurance Brokers, described Masojada as “one of the good guys”, adding: “I’ve got a long history with Bronek and I’ve always had a good relationship with him.”

Mike Douglas has joined Hazelton Mountford in its offices at 105 High Street, Evesham to support the growth of the business, thanks to extra demand in the town. According to the Broker, Douglas brings with him a wealth of experience in insurance, having worked in the industry since 2006, with 10 years specialising in commercial insurance.

Liberty Specialty Markets (LSM), part of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, has appointed Denise Delaney as Head of Responsible Business.  

Occam Underwriting, the specialist lines-focused Managing General Agent has hired Oliver Litterick as Director and Head of Low Carbon Energy to lead and build a new low Carbon Energy (re)insurance business.

Specialty lines MGA Ensurance has announced the appointment of Lead Casualty Underwriter Martino D’Aliesio. The business stated that the hire expands its presence in Casualty underwriting, building on its core lines in Construction, Engineering & Terrorism.

Howden has announced that it has appointed Charlie Connell to its sports & entertainment practice group in the newly created Head of Entertainment role. Howden Group Holdings (Howden) has also appointed Kelly Lyles as the new Independent Non-Executive Director of its board. Lyles has over 35 years of industry experience and a solid global perspective.

In other news, Howden Group has boosted its international legal capabilities with the appointments of Will Bloomer as its Chief Corporate and Legal Affairs Officer and Frances Coats as its new Group General Counsel.

The personal lines insurance Broker, Got You Covered, has announced that Adrian Parry will join the Executive Management Team in an advisory role as Non-Executive Director. 

Domestic & General (D&G)has announced that Matthew Crummack has been appointed as its new Chief Executive Officer. Crummack will join the company’s board of Directors and its Executive Committee on October 04, 2021.

British Marine, part of QBE Insurance Group, has appointed Guy Pierpoint as Portfolio Manager British Marine P&I. He will be responsible for managing the portfolio and targeting strategic growth opportunities as part of British Marine’s ongoing business development plan.

Aon has strengthened its tax insurance team, part of its M&A and transaction solutions group, with the addition of directors Christophe Bonneville ,Cristina Chaparro and Joyce Koch.