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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 14th January 2022

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Insurance News

TheInternational Underwriting Association of London (IUA)has outlined its business plan for the new year, which seeks to address the topics of concern for London company market clients. Based on results of recent risk management surveys, the IUA said the areas that need addressing include Climate Risk, Business Interruption, Regulatory Changes, and Pandemic Response.

In a move that may grab the attention of one Novak Djokovic,Jackson Lee Underwriting (JLU)has relaunched its Sports Travel Plus policy, now enhanced to cover for COVID-specific risks. The relaunched Sports Travel Plus policy is a BIBA-approved scheme which now has new wording that covers more than 150 sports, each at a highly granular level, a release said. Designed to provide cover for sports enthusiasts, groups, and teams competing, participating, and training overseas, the scheme’s new wording includes coverage for non-standard aspects such as COVID cancellation, medical treatment costs, and repatriation, in addition to extra travel and accommodation expenses if the policyholder contracts COVID-19 overseas.

Brokers have stated that they want to see a clear Broker strategy and more engagement fromRSAfollowing its takeover byIntact Financial Corporationand the appointment of a new UK and International Chief Executive Officer. RSA has received criticism from regional Brokers over the past few years, with experts accusing the provider of being “difficult to trade with” – a situation that previous CEO Scott Egan repeatedly committed to addressing and rectifying.

Following an 8,4% premium drop year-on-year, data analysis fromConsumer Intelligencerevealed that the average Motor premium in the UK is now £782, up from £732 in summer 2021. As dual pricing rules have come into force, Consumer Intelligence pricing experts noted that the direction of travel for the cost of Car insurance may be about to change after months of contraction brought on by the pandemic.

MGA Iprismhas added its Tradesman, Contractors, and Professionals Product to the SSP Insurance platform in a move which designed to broaden its distribution channels. The MGA, which specialises in Construction, Property, Commercial and High Net Worth, has detailed that the SSP integration will allow Brokers to access Iprism’s core product via the software house platform.

One market is set to surge, according to global brokerageWillis Towers Watson (WTW)– and that market, is Renewable Energy. In its annual Renewable Energy Market Review, the firm outlines that companies are increasingly looking to transition to a low carbon environment. The speed of growth, it states, is also prompting increased demand for building resilience against climate change.

In further news...Willis Towers Watson (WTW)has announced the formation of a new crisis management unit with the merger of SCR and its political violence teams. The unit will sit within WTW’s Financial Solutions Global line of business and be headed by Jo Holliday, Managing Director of SCR.

Cashplus Bank, the leading digital challenger bank, has announced a partnership with top UK insurTech,Superscript. The partnership will see Cashplus customers offered customisable and flexible business insurance through the bank’s digital SME Marketplace for the first time.

AvivaandPrestige Underwriting Serviceshave agreed a new five-year distribution deal covering non-standard Motor and Van insurance for Personal Lines customers. The latest deal will see Aviva underwrite cover for non-standard Motor and Van risks throughout the UK and will be distributed through Prestige Underwriting’s network of 600 Brokers and affinity partners. The agreement runs until 2026 and builds on an existing relationship where Aviva underwrites Motor and non-standard Home policies for Prestige.

BIBAfirmly believes in working with, and for Brokers, and its regional structure allows for Broker views to be fed into the organisation at main Board level. Late 2021 saw the re-launch of its West of England Regional Committee, chaired by Niki Facey of Marsh, Bristol. The West of England Committee will be reaching out to BIBA members throughout the region, providing them with a direct conduit for their views into the BIBA main board. BIBA’s Regional Committees can gather extensive and valuable grass-roots knowledge of the issues affecting members in a geographic area, so can facilitate change. As well as amplifying the regional voice local committees can help with local networking and educational events.

Mergers & Acquisitions

CPP Group UKhas purchased the Travel insurance and Scheme Specialist businessAlpha Underwritingfor an undisclosed sum. The Managing General Agent stated that the deal sees it grow its Broker network to over 500-strong. It detailed that the acquisition includes Alpha’s general insurance Broker network and Broker portal, which provides online quote, purchase and administration tools for Brokers for a range of Travel insurance products. 

Marshall Wooldridge, Global Risk Partners’ (GRP) Yorkshire hub, has bought the business and assets of Rotherham-basedGoldthorpe Insurance Brokersfor an undisclosed sum. Goldthorpe is a family-owned and managed business which writes both Commercial and Personal Lines. The deal completed on 1 January 2022. Marshall Wooldridge Managing Director Geoff Kirk described Goldthorpe as a “good fit”, adding that it had a strong local presence.

Specialist Risk Group (SRG)has agreed to buy the London-based Special Risks team fromBridge Insurance. SRG stated that the team, led by Jonathan Starkey and David Walker, has deep expertise in arranging insurance programmes for businesses operating in conflict-affected territories. This includes Mine Clearance, Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Recovery. The team will join SRG’s existing special risks team led by Cliff Butters.

The Credit insurance and Surety specialist,Xenia Broking Grouphas acquired the UK whole turnover Trade Credit and Surety business ofTysers Insurance Brokersfor an undisclosed sum. The transaction completed on 11 January 2022 and marks Xenia’s eighth acquisition to date and fifth in the last nine months. It is also Xenia’s second acquisition of a Trade Credit client portfolio from a general Broker. Martyn Locke, Client Director at Tysers, transfers to Xenia with the client portfolio.

Movo Partnershiphas six further deals in the pipeline, according to Managing Director Lea Cheesbrough. Parent companyMovo Investment Grouprevealed yesterday that the business had bought three commercial Brokers -Chiltern Insurance Groupbased in Reading,FLS Generalin Essex, andKidd Insurancein West Lothian.

Movers & Shakers

Avivahas announced thatJason Windsorhas resigned as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and as a Director at the Insurer with effect from July 2022. According to Aviva, the recruitment process for a new CFO is underway. Meanwhile, Windsor will stay with the business until July to oversee any transition and deliver the company’s full year results, which are due in March. He will then move on to Persimmon to take on the role of CFO.

TheChartered Insurance Institute (CII)has appointedJonathan Clarkas Interim Chief Executive Officer, with immediate effect. Clark was a former President of both the CII and the Chartered Institute of Loss Adjusters, as well as a CII Treasurer between 2003 and 2007.

Liberty Specialty Markets (LSM), part of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, has appointed two new Senior Underwriters,Steve LawrenceandAndrew Whittaker, to support the launch of a Real Estate insurance product. Before joining LSM, both spent 22 years at Managing General Agent European Property Underwriting Limited (EPUL).

Former Broker Network bossAndy Fairchildhas joined US-domiciled BrokerAcrisureas an Advisor. He took on the position of Retail Broking Advisor and Chairman networks in January 2022.

Former President, CEO and Chairman of Lockton Companies,David Lockton, has secured a new role within the insurance industry. Insurance holding companyObsidian Insurance Holdings Inc., has announced the appointment of Lockton to its parent company’s board of Directors.

Willis Towers Watson (WTW)has appointedRobert Gardnerto the role of Retail Industry Leader – Renewable Energy & Power for the company’s Risk & Broking division in Great Britain. A veteran with 29 years of experience, Gardner joins WTW from Marsh, where he held a variety of leadership roles in London and New York for 27 years.

In further news...Willis Towers Watsonhas announced the appointment ofSteve Powneyas Surety Practice Leader for Europe and the UK. Powney was previously Head of International Surety at Crum and Foster and has lead surety operations for Asia, Europe and the Middle East. His responsibilities include underwriting, production and operational excellence.

Allianz Insurancehas announced changes within its commercial business to ensure a seamless service to Brokers whilst maintaining great focus on its engineering propositions. Following the changes, there are four Regional Managers, whose roles have been extended to include responsibility for the Engineering Construction & Power (EC&P) Distribution and Underwriting Operations, bringing together the former Commercial Broker Markets and the EC&P trading businesses. These Regional Managers are:Chris Everett– North (Leeds, Newcastle, Manchester), Northern Ireland (Belfast) & Scotland (Glasgow),Mike Thomas– South (Southampton, Chelmsford, Maidstone)Patrick Flannery– Midlands (Birmingham), South West (Bristol) and Wales (Cardiff) andTom Leonard– London, Lloyds & London Market Real Estate. Meanwhile,Jonathan Oldfieldis appointed to the newly created role of Head of Customer and Distribution for EC&P.

HDI Global SE – UK & Ireland (HDI)is pleased to announce thatNiall Carberryhas been appointed to the role of Head of Underwriting, Ireland. Carberry joins HDI from Chubb where he has spent the majority of his career to date. In his most recent role, he held overall responsibility for the Casualty Portfolio in Ireland.

Aon plchas namedPete Rutherfordas Enterprise Client Leader, Financial Institutions in the UK. Pete brings 25 years of Financial Institutions (FI) experience to Aon, with deep sector expertise in banking, asset management, life companies, and insurance. He joins from HSBC, where he served as Managing Director, Head of EMEA Insurance, and UK Bank Coverage, responsible for managing key global clients. Pete began his career at Capital Bank, and he has held several senior positions at Standard Life (now Abrdn), Clydesdale Bank, Albannach Financial Management, and The Royal Bank of Scotland.

AXA XLhas appointedThisiani Matsumura-Martinsas Global Chief Underwriting Officer, Aerospace. Ms. Matsumura-Martins brings 27 years of experience in the insurance and reinsurance industry. She has previously worked at Allianz and Liberty, and as an Underwriter in a variety of business lines including Aerospace, Property, Construction, Marine, Personal Accident and Life.

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