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Claims Newsletter Wednesday 5th October 2022

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Claims News

The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) and Loss Adjuster QuestGates have published a guide to valuations for BIBA’s insurance Broker members to use with their customers. This new guide is the second of the year that BIBA has launched to help tackle the problem of underinsurance. The Association made a commitment in its 2022 Manifesto to highlight the dangers of underinsurance and welcomed the support firstly from Allianz and now from its member facility provider QuestGates to provide support for Brokers and their customers.

AXA UK Retail has launched Moja, a new digital-only insurance brand for customers who buy products or use services via their smartphone or tablet. Initially available for Motor insurance customers on Compare the Market and directly via the new brand’s website, Moja will be rolled out across more price comparison websites later this year and extended into other insurance markets from 2023.

Fletchers Group has agreed a new £8 million credit facility with its bank to invest in its organic growth strategy. The legal services business, which specialises in medical negligence, serious and motorbike injuries, was acquired by Sun Capital last October. Alex Lynch, Chief Financial Officer at Fletchers, said the new facility, negotiated with RBS and completed at the end of August, replaced £4 million of debt and includes an option for a further £2 million: “The finance facility will be used to drive our ambitious organic growth plans over the next three years.”

Aviva is launching one of the UK’s first standalone insurance products covering electric vehicle charging points to protect both installers and operators. The product was developed in response to demand from Brokers for a specialist all-risks policy, as electric vehicle charging points become increasingly common at motorway service stations, in public and private car parks, on garage forecourts and in on-street parking bays.

Mott MacDonald has teamed up with the Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment to develop a tool that aims to help asset owners and investors understand the exposure of critical infrastructure to climate risks. Developed to address the considerable gap in financing, the Physical Climate Risk Assessment Methodology, or PCRAM, supplies the practical tools to identify and assess the resilience of infrastructure assets, and clarifies ROI in the process.

Optio Group is to establish an MGA and reinsurance Broker in Dubai. Subject to final approvals from the UAE regulatory authorities, both businesses are expected to be operational by 1st January 2023, with an initial focus on A&H, and plans to make PVT, marine war, K&R and FL available in the region in due course.

Apex Group has expanded its ESG offering with the launch of an EU Taxonomy Solution to ensure clients’ alignment, ahead of growing disclosure requirements. The EU Taxonomy is a classification system to identify environmentally sustainable economic activities within companies and portfolios. EU Taxonomy reporting is required for investors seeking alignment with Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation Article 9 and companies in scope of the EU Non-Financial Reporting Directive.

Guy Carpenter has entered an agreement with location-based traffic-crash intelligence and predictive analytics firm, TNEDICCA, to provide enhanced auto analytics to its insurance carrier clients. Clients in the US Personal and Commercial auto marketplace will now be able to access this new capability to develop rate making and underwriting strategies.

A new Professional Indemnity insurance scheme for EWS1 (external wall fire review form) assessors is now available, after many months in development. Initially announced in February of this year, and scheduled for delivery in September, the new scheme is delivered by MGAM through an insurance provided by SCOR UK, and reinsured by the government.

Fidelis is implementing extended ESG underwriting guidelines, with four umbrella groups (environmental, human and labour rights, animal welfare, rule of law) and six industry-specific guidelines (Defence and Armaments, Forestry and Agriculture, Mining, Coal, Oil and Gas, Nuclear). The new guidelines will initially apply to insurance business, with an approach being explored for treaty reinsurance.

WTW has teamed up with the University of Cambridge’s Centre for Risk Studies to develop an Airport Risk Index. Aimed at helping the world’s airports introduce new risk profiling methods to future-proof their resilience planning, the index compares 110 of the world’s busiest airports by passenger volumes, against 19 identified threats. Launched at the annual WTW Airport Risk Community conference in Lisbon, the index allows airports to interrogate their existing and future assumptions on risk exposure. It combines historical and predictive analysis, to determine the levels of probability and impact of operational disruption on an airport’s profitability.

Clyde & Co has announced the launch of a new end-to-end international offering to help organisations manage and respond to Cyber risk. Named One, the new offering puts legal expertise at heart of the fight against Cyber criminals and helps organisations respond to Cyber threats and build their resilience.

Natural catastrophe data provider ICEYE has partnered with If P&C Insurance on a pilot scheme for the use of its Flood Insights product. ICEYE’s data and insights are intended to enable users to gain rapid situational awareness of any flood event globally. High resolution flood imagery is captured via ICEYE’s proprietary SAR satellite constellation and combined with auxiliary information – including elevation models, ground sensors and river gauges – to generate flood extent and depth insights within 24 hours of a flood’s peak.

Data analytics firm EXL has collaborated with Cyber risk specialist CyberCube to jointly develop Cyber insurance solutions for the Property and Casualty (P&C) insurance industry. The partnership aims to combine EXL’s insurance industry data, analytics and operations management with CyberCube’s Cyber risk signals, scores, and analytics to help insurers scale their Cyber insurance offerings to meet growing demand.

Risk Managers in the Power sector must tackle an entirely new risk landscape brought about by the Russia-Ukraine conflict, global inflation, the energy transition, and climate change, according to WTW. The challenges for the sector range from the technological to the geopolitical says WTW, and include the management of physical and transition risks, ways that modelling can support the risk process, Directors’ potential liabilities arising from climate change, and the introduction of hydrogen as a fuel for gas turbines.

Markel International has launched a new solution for Brokers and policyholders operating within the Media and Entertainment space. The new Media and Entertainment policy wording combines Markel’s existing Media Production and Media Liability wordings into one comprehensive policy for production companies registered in the UK and EEA.

Praedicat has teamed up with Experian to create a portfolio analysis tool for Underwriters of D&O in the US. Co Meta Pro combines Experian’s data and risk scoring methodologies with Praedicat’s emerging risk and portfolio modelling capabilities to deliver a new solution to the D&O market.

Beazley has announced the launch of a new online portal, created in partnership with Paragon, for its Weather Guard clients. Andrew Duxbury, Head of Contingency at Beazley said: “Weather Guard is a market leading weather insurance product, leveraging Beazley’s comprehensive historical weather data and experience going back nearly 40 years and backed with outstanding underwriting expertise; it offers excellent protection against extreme weather events to businesses across the United States."

QuestGates has been hand-picked by WIRED and HSBC, from hundreds of businesses across the UK, to be one of their inaugural WIRED Trailblazers. Reacting to this new accolade for QuestGates Managing Director, Chris Hall, comments: “Receiving any award is a true honour for our business, but this one is particularly special as it results from independent research conducted byWIRED Consulting and HSBC.”

Holiday Inn owner, Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG), has confirmed the company has been hit by a Cyber-attack. IHG, which has some of the world's largest hotel chains, issued a statement saying it was investigating "unauthorised access" to a number of its technology systems. IHG confirmed it was assessing the nature, extent and impact of the incident and had implemented its response plans, including appointing external specialists to investigate the breach.

Ransomware demands and claims for all Cyber incidents fell in the first half of this year, but small businesses have increasingly become targets, Managing General Agent Coalition Inc. said in an update to its 2022 Cyber Claims Report. In an analysis of claims data from its 160,000 policyholders, San Francisco-based Coalition said ransomware demands fell to $896,000 in the first half from $1.37 million during the first six months of 2021. Of those that resulted in payments, the amount was negotiated to about 20% of the demand.

Lloyd’s has set aside £1.1bn for losses arising from the conflict in Ukraine, around a quarter of the sum relating to expected Aviation losses. “We expect this will be a major by financially manageable loss event for the market in 2022,” said Burkhard Keese, Lloyd’s Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer.

Mergers & Acquisitions

Sedgwick has acquired Kerr Baxter Associates (KBA), further extending its commercial surveying services. As part of Sedgwick, the KBA team will provide project surveying and architectural services. This will strengthen its existing surveying service by offering additional commercial capabilities.

In further news...Sedgwick has acquired full ownership of Sedgwick Leif Hansen in Denmark, or which the firm was previously a minority shareholder. Because Sedgwick Leif Hansen has operated as part of the Sedgwick family since 2018, staff and clients are not expected to see any change as a result of the ownership transition.

Fletchers Group has acquired Minton Morrill, the Yorkshire law firm specialising in complex medical negligence claims. Leeds-based Minton Morrill has represented clients in high value medical negligence claims, often involving brain injury, for more than 30 years. All members of the firm, including Directors Simon Minton, Julia Morrill and Sahida Patel, will remain with the business under new ownership.

Howden has completed its acquisition of Théorème, a family-owned corporate insurance Broker headquartered in Paris. Founded in 1991 and led by Xavier de Font-Réaulx, the business specialises in P/C and employee benefits for SMEs and large corporate clients across the full insurance value chain, having grown significantly in recent years to now serve 1,500 clients from its offices in Paris, Annecy and Nantes.

Law firm DWF has acquired Manchester-based Acumension, which provides costs management services to a number of DWF clients, including NHS Resolution and NFU Mutual. Daryl Norvock, Operations Director at Acumension, said: "Since 1998 we have worked to become a leader in legal cost management, specialising in dealing with complex defendant costs and utilising data capture and analysis to automate our processes."

Movers & Shakers

Spotlite Claims, the specialist Loss Adjuster to the Film, TV and Creative industries, has appointed Alex Nicoll to a senior adjusting and business development role. The appointment comes as the firm continues to broaden its reach in other classes of Entertainment insurance, including event cancellation and non-appearance, and in the sporting arena. Nicoll joined Spotlite at the beginning of September from his previous role at the UK Department of Culture, Media and Sport, where for two years he led on contract and project management for the team overseeing the £500 million emergency COVID-19 Film & TV Production Restart Scheme.

Markerstudy has appointed Clare Lunn to the new role of Head of Fraud. Lunn, who has chaired the General Insurance Fraud Committee for more than three years, will be responsible for leading and developing Markerstudy’s fraud prevention strategy, reporting to Chief Operating Officer Gary Hueting. She joins Markerstudy from LV=, where she worked in Counter Fraud for nearly nine years.

DAC Beachcroft has appointed Catastrophic and Large Loss Claims Specialists Philip D’Netto and Daniel Clegg as Partners in its National Complex and Catastrophic Injury practice. D’Netto and Clegg, who have joined DAC Beachcroft’s Manchester office, both moved from Plexus Law. There, D’Netto has led its Catastrophic Injury team since 2018, working with Clegg who joined as a Partner in 2017.

The General Insurance Fraud Committee has appointed David Phillips, Claims Validation Technical Manager at NFU Mutual, as its chair to lead the industry's counter-fraud strategy.

All information provided in this Market Digest has been gathered from Claims Mag, Continuity Insurance & Risk, QuestGates Ltd LinkedIn, BIBA, Insurance Post, BBC and Business Insurance.