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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 2nd December 2022

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Insurance News

At the CFC Cyber Forum, James Burns, Head of Cyber at CFC, revealed plans to categorise Cyber incidents, just like weather events, to determine the impact of each incident and to help insurers and brokers regulate the severity of subsequent claims. Burns started off the talk by describing a catastrophic event that took place in the United States, a category five hurricane, that changed the way Property insurers had to think about systemic risks. (Insurance Age, 01/12/2022, Sophie Locke-Cooper, 'A system to categorise cyber incidents in the pipeline - CFC head Burns')

SSP has been hit by a Cyber security breach from the Lockbit ransomware group, but brokers say their systems are unaffected. Dervensure Insurance Brokers Limited Director Andrew Willows, who uses SSP on his broking systems in his Northern Ireland broker, said: “I have not seen anything. There’s no affect or issue for me personally.” (Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Saxon East, 'Brokers say SSP ransomware attack not disrupting their systems')

The Chartered Insurance Institute Group has reported a mean average gender pay gap of 21.19%, up from 14.81% in 2021, alongside an improved ethnicity pay gap of 13.1%. The latter was a near halving of the 25.43% posted in 2021, the first year the professional standards body reported the statistic. According to the CII, the increase in its mean gender pay gap to 21.19% reflected fewer males employed in lower and middle quartile pay roles.(Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Emmanuel Kenning, 'CII gender pay gap spikes to 21.19%')

Aviva’s application fraud is on the rise, with ghost broking making up 15% of all policy fraud. The UK’s largest general insurer recorded a 16% rise in Motor insurance policy fraud in October, compared to the same period last year. Aviva blocked more than 23,300 fraudulent or suspect Motor insurance applications through October this year, compared with just over 20,000 at this same point last year. (Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Saxon East, 'Ghost broking still a major problem as Aviva’s application fraud rises 16%')

Allianz Commercial has launched an Accelerator programme to support independent brokers and has revealed plans to recruit 30 Underwriters. The new model aims to provide a tailored approach to broker relationships. Brokers will be segmented into three tiers, Broker Partners, Primer Partners or Strategic Partners, and each will receive a unique package of support. (Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Sophie Locke-Cooper, 'Allianz Commercial launches new programme in bid to support independent brokers')

Financial Advisers who mis-sold Pensions to British Steel workers ‘are concerned that their PII cover may not respond to claims’, it has emerged in a Financial Conduct Authority update. In a ‘Dear CEO’ letter to Professional Indemnity insurance firms, the FCA has outlined a list of its expectations over the compensation scheme it announced for British Steel workers. (Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Saxon East, 'IFAs who mis-sold pensions to steel workers fear insurers will reject PI claims')

Qlaims has extended its claims assistance to provide after the event services to its brokers. Qlaims, founded in 2017, already delivered before the event services for private clients and businesses. The insurtech managing general agent detailed that ATE professional services will be delivered through a combination of inhouse and panel customer facing adjusters giving it national claims coverage.(Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Emmanuel Kenning, 'Qlaims launches ATE service')

Freedom Service Group has revealed that its four-day week pilot was a success and the offering will be introduced permanently from January 2023. The trial scheme was introduced in July this year to give staff back time with no salary reduction. This meant that full-time employees had their hours reduced to 34 hours over four days and part-time employees were able to cut their hours by the equivalent pro-rata amount. (Insurance Age, 29/11/2022, Sophie Locke-Cooper, 'Freedom Service Group reveals permanent 4-day work week')

Risk, benefits, and integrated business solutions provider Sedgwick has launched a new resource solutions business unit for its insurer clients in the UK. According to a company release, the new unit will draw on Sedgwick’s experience and technical expertise to help clients with both temporary and permanent placements across claims-handling divisions. (Insurance Business Mag UK, 01/12/2022, Lyle Adriano, 'Sedgwick launches new resource solutions for the UK market')

AXA has resumed services with SSP having cut off services to the cyber-hit software house as a precautionary measure. In an email, AXA told brokers that it had cut off insurer-hosted pricing and electronic data interchange on Personal Lines services with SSP following the Cyber incident on November 25. (Insurance Age, 01/12/2022, Saxon East, 'Axa resumes SSP broker service after cutting off cyber-hit software house')

BGL Insurance and Covéa have launched a new insurance brand, promising to "shake up" the Motor insurance market. The new brand, called nutshell, offers online “fuss-free” cover according to Covéa and BGLi. Nutshell combines Covéa’s underwriting and claims management with BGLi’s pricing, customer service, digital distribution and technology. (Insurance Age, 01/12/2022, Lauren Ingram, ''BGL Insurance and Covéa launch new insurance brand')

The October renewal period saw a shift in attitude from Solicitors’ Professional Indemnity insurers, with many showing a greater appetite to grow their existing portfolio, according to a report from Miller, which also said that market conditions indicate the worst may be behind the industry. According to the Solicitors’ Professional Indemnity Insurance Market Update, this increased appetite and willingness to engage with the right firms has been absent from the market for a while. However, the report also said that insurers remain extremely selective, so firms need to present themselves in a positive way.(Insurance Business Mag UK, 01/12/2022, Gabriel Olano, 'October renewals show shift in legal PI insurers' attitude – report')

In a move to further support independent brokers Allianz Commercial has launched a new model to provide a consistent, yet tailored approach to broker relationships. Brokers will be segmented into three tiers - identified as Broker Partners, Prime Partners or Strategic Partners - and each will receive a unique package of support. Alongside this, the newly created Allianz Accelerator programme is available for selected high potential independent brokers to support mutual growth. Products, services and campaigns will be aligned to brokers’ requirements to support them with their own growth ambitions and customer servicing whilst building and rewarding loyal relationships.(youTalk Insurance, 01/12/2022, Allianz, 'Allianz Commercial to appoint 30 underwriters as part of new programme to support independent brokers')

In a speech at the Insurance Institute of London, Institute President and Marsh UK & Ireland CEO Chris Lay highlighted how, despite being a global hub for financial services and insurance, the UK is not perceived as a viable location for captive insurance vehicles due to regulatory barriers. According to Mr. Lay, Guernsey and the Isle of Man are the most common captive jurisdictions for UK-based companies and public sector bodies, but Ireland, Malta, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands and Vermont are also used.(youTalk Insurance, 28/11/2022, Marsh, 'Marsh’s Chris Lay calls for review of regulatory barriers to development of UK captive industry')

ARAG has picked up the Insurance Provider of the Year title at the Personal Injury Awards, for the third time in four years. The company triumphed in a strong field of shortlisted after-the-event (ATE) providers, in a category that identifies innovation, service and commercial success as key criteria, as well as positive relationships throughout the personal injury litigation sector. (youTalk, 28/11/2022, ARAG, 'ARAG named Insurance Provider of the Year for 3rd time in 4 years')

The financial services watchdog, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), has warned insurance firms not to undervalue cars or other insured assets when settling insurance claims – particularly during the cost-of-living crisis. In a Press release, the FCA said it has seen evidence that some consumers are being offered a price lower than their vehicle’s fair market value by their insurance providers in the event of their cars being written off after an accident. In some cases, the watchdog said, claims staff are only increasing that offer to the fair market price when a consumer complains.(Insurance Business Mag UK, 01/12/2022, Mia Wallace, 'FCA issues warning to insurance providers on undervaluing insureds’ assets')

Deacon, the specialist Residential Property broking business of Gallagher in the UK, will soon take on the latter’s identity. Set up in 1989, Deacon was acquired by Gallagher in 2013. On December 5, the business will be rebranded as Gallagher, joining the likes of Aerospace broker Hayward Aviation and Retail Marine broker Coleman Marine who underwent the same name shift this year. (Insurance Business Mag UK, 02/12/2022, Terry Ganguangco, 'Gallagher reveals another rebranding')

Mergers & Acquisitions

BMS Group could be sold for £600m, as shareholders evaluate options for the future of the London broker. Advisory firm Evercore has been brought in to help BMS owners British Columbia Investment Management Corporation and Preservation Capital Partners evaluate their options. BMS secured long-term investment in 2019 from BCI and PCP, with the firm then valued at around £500m. (Insurance Age, 01/12/2022, Saxon East, 'BMS Group explores sale – report')

East Anglia’s One Broker Group has bought Uttings Insurance Brokers in Norfolk for an undisclosed sum. The move increases the group’s total headcount to more than 110 people, with three offices and gross written premium in excess of £60m. Established in 1988, Uttings Insurance Brokers has business and private clients across the UK.(Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Emmanuel Kenning, 'One Broker buys Uttings Insurance Brokers')

PIB Group has bought Lincolnshire-based health and safety specialists Emprocom to add to its risk management division. The deal follows on from snapping up Bailey Garner (Health & Safety) in April and takes the division’s headcount to over 100. The consolidator detailed that Emprocom’s Carl Gryniewicz will continue in his role as Director on completion of the takeover, working closely with Adrian Robinson, Managing Director for PIB Risk Management. (Insurance Age, 30/11/2022, Emmanuel Kenning, 'PIB buys health and safety specialists Emprocom')

Global Risk Partners (GRP) has acquired CC Flint and Company Ltd (Flint Insurance), its biggest acquisition since becoming part of Brown & Brown, Inc. in July 2022. Flint Insurance, founded in 1982 and headquartered in Orpington, Kent, is a well-established, highly successful commercial insurance broker who specialises in Commercial Business, Motor Fleet and Private Client’s insurance. (youTalk Insurance, 28/11/2022, GRP, 'GRP completes biggest broker acquisition deal since Brown & Brown investment')

The Ardonagh Group subsidiary Ardonagh Advisory has acquiredThe Professional Broking Group, which trades as The Professional Indemnity Company. The deal will see the PI insurer operate as part of the wider Ardonagh Advisory platform, including regional PI broker Alice Castle and Lloyd’s PI broker Hera Indemnity, as well as Bravo Networks, Ethos Broking, and Towergate Insurance Brokers.(Insurance Business Mag UK, 02/12/2022, Roxanne Labatique, 'Ardonagh Advisory seals acquisition of The Professional Indemnity Company')

Movers & Shakers

Zurich has announced Frank Streidl as the new UK Head of Commercial Insurance, starting his position from 1 January 2023. Streidl is currently the Head of Energy, Marine and Construction at Zurich, and joined the insurer in 2010. He has worked in several positions in Zurich including Head of Energy EMEA and Global Head of Upstream Energy.(Insurance Age, 01/12/2022, Lauren Ingram, 'Zurich UK names new head of UK commercial insurance')

Aon plc has announced that Michelle Mason is to expand her role as Head of Enterprise Clients (ECG) to include the strategic leadership of the UK Major Complex and Enterprise (MCE) segment. Michelle has over 23 years’ experience in insurance and risk management, covering cross-class global account management and enterprise and operational risk management consulting. She has worked with complex clients to develop and deliver their risk management and insurance strategies. (youTalk Insurance, 01/12/2022, Aon, 'Michelle Mason to expand role at Aon in UK')

Looking forward to 2023 Premium Credit has reshaped its Insurance Premium Finance (IPF) Sales Team to recognise the bespoke needs of the Commercial Lines, Personal Lines and e-Trade markets. Christy Chisholm has completed a transition from Sales Support Director to Deputy Director of Commercial Lines after a period of covering both roles. Mark Coffey, formerly of Atlanta, Oak and RSA has recently joined Premium Credit as Personal Lines and e-Trade Director, leading the business in those markets. Glen Murphy has been promoted to Sales Support Director with a focus on helping the IPF Sales Team deliver on the business’ “100% offer” strategy through existing partners, new partners and new propositions .(youTalk Insurance, 01/12/2022, Premium Credit, 'Premium Credit refreshes insurance sales team')

Tysers Insurance Brokers is delighted to announce the appointment of Andrew Kendrick as Non-Executive Chair. Andrew is a former Non-Executive Director of Lloyd’s of London, Lloyd’s Market Association and Russian Reinsurance Co. He has more than 40 years’ experience in the insurance industry in the UK, Europe and Bermuda. Andrew’s executive career includes leadership positions with Chubb and Ace, culminating in the role of President & Chairman, Chubb European Group.  He began his career at Sturge Syndicate 210, and held a number of senior underwriting positions with Ockham Underwriting. (youTalk Insurance, 28/11/2022, Tysers Insurance Brokers, 'Tysers appoints Andrew Kendrick as Non-Executive Chair')

AXA XL has announced that Marcia Cantor-Grable will join the boards of AXA XL Underwriting Agencies Ltd and AXA XL Insurance Company UK Ltd as an independent Non-Executive Director, effective 1 December 2022. Ms. Cantor-Grable has operated at executive committee and board level roles as a CEO, Chief Risk Officer, and Chief Compliance Officer in insurance and banking in the US and UK. She has held a variety of senior global and regional roles in corporate and project finance, capital markets and product development, principally at Prudential plc, GE Capital, and BNY Mellon. (youTalk Insurance, 01/12/2022, AXA XL, 'AXA XL Underwriting Agencies Ltd and AXA XL Insurance Company UK Ltd appoint new independent NED')

​Chubb has announced that it has appointed Carene Madden as Financial Lines Manager for the UK, Ireland, and South Africa (UKISA). Madden joins Chubb from AIG, where she served as UK Financial Institutions Manager since 2019. She has over 25 years of experience in the insurance industry, primarily focused on Financial Lines. She returns to Chubb following an earlier 13-year spell in several roles in the UK and Ireland.(Insurance Business Mag UK, 02/12/2022, Lyle Adriano, 'Chubb names new financial lines manager for the UK')

All information provided in this Market Digest has been gathered from Insurance Age, Insurance Business UK and youTalk insurance.