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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 9th December 2022

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The Financial Conduct Authority needs urgent staff reform amid a collapse in morale that means it cannot regulate effectively, union Unite has claimed. Unite is demanding a five-point staff action plan is put in place, arguing the FCA can be a better regulator if it treats “staff right”.(Saxon East, 08/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Union calls for urgent action amid FCA staff morale “collapse”')

In further news...The Financial Conduct Authority has proposed new measures to stamp out illegal, unfair or misleading financial marketing. The regulator outlined new checks for firms that want to approve financial promotions. The new measures will force businesses to show they have the right expertise for the promotions they want to approve. (Emmanuel Kenning, 05/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'FCA outlines rogue financial promotions clamp down')

The Information Commissioner’s Office has fined five firms a total of £435,000 for making nearly half a million nuisance calls trying to sell white goods insurance. The ICO highlighted that some of the unlawful calls appeared to be directed at elderly vulnerable people who had taken action to block them by registering with the Telephone Preference Service. (Lauren Ingram, 07/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Romero Group makes first acquisition')

The British Insurance Brokers’ Association has worked with CFC to publish a new guide to help brokers and small businesses understand the prevailing Cyber risks. CFC is the specialist Cyber insurance provider behind Biba’s Cyber insurance scheme. The guide will help brokers and SMEs to learn about the threat landscape that actively targets small businesses and how Cyber insurance can protect a business from criminal attacks. (Lauren Ingram, 07/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Romero Group makes first acquisition')

Zywave has revealed an extension to its broker briefcase allowing insurers, MGAs and third parties to insert their broker-focused content directly into the workflow of a broker. Previously the broker briefcase, a tool to support brokers in their sales, marketing and client-services practices, came with all content on the platform being generated by Zywave. (Emmanuel Kenning, 07/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Markel first to partner with Zywave on broker briefcase expansion')

SSP has been told it must improve service after the latest attack caused AXA to cut off its Personal Lines to brokers. The broker reaction comes as a website is claiming SSP has until December 12 to respond to Cyber hackers and pay $7m, or face hacked files being published. (Saxon East, 07/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Ransomware-hit SSP under broker fire amid latest issues')

Chaucer has rolled out an initiative to measure the environmental, social and governance performance of clients and business partners. The idea of the ESG scorecard was revealed in February with CEO of Chaucer, John Fowle, labelling it a “gamechanger” for the (re)insurance industry. It was designed in collaboration with credit rating business Moody’s, and uses 158 metrics to measure performance. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 06/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Chaucer launches new ESG ‘scorecard’')

This week, Lloyd’s addressed the market with topics including market oversight plans for 2023. Led by Chief of Markets Patrick Tiernan, the session also featured Market Oversight Director Peter Montanaro and Lloyd’s Chief Actuary Emma Stewart. The latter talked about 2023 capital impacts, discussing the subject of capital resubmissions and what is expected of Lloyd’s syndicates in this regard. (Terry Gangcuangco, 08/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Lloyd's addresses market in quarterly message')

In further news...The Lloyd’s underwriting room was “packed” on Thursday, as market players traded face to face in support of the ‘back to the room’ initiative by Lloyd’s Wholesale broker Tysers. Among those happy to be interacting with peers in the flesh was London & International Insurance Brokers’ Association Chief Executive Christopher Croft, who congratulated the AUB Group-owned brokerage on LinkedIn.(Terry Gangcuangco, 09/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Tysers gains market support for 'back to the [Lloyd's underwriting] room' initiative')

Sister firms Ataraxia and Minority Venture Partners (MVP), which make up the broking group owned by industry heavyweight Peter Cullum CBE, is targeting further organic growth in 2023. Chaired by Cullum and led by Group Chief Executive Dave Clapp, Ataraxia and MVP announced that their combined gross written premium (GWP) for the financial year ended June 2022 stood at £190 million. The sum was attributed to what was described as a “very strong” 20% organic growth in the period.(Terry Gangcuangco, 07/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Peter Cullum's broking group eyes further growth')

The Z Zurich Foundation, a charitable organization established by members of the Zurich Insurance Group, has announced the creation of its Urban Climate Resilience Program (UCRP), set to launch Jan. 1 and support urban communities in 10 countries around the world. The UCRP is a collaboration between the Z Zurich Foundation, several members of the Zurich Insurance Group, the Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance and several city networks. (Ryan Smith, 07/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Zurich charitable arm reveals Urban Climate Resilience Program')

AXA UK has announced a partnership with Hey Girls, a social enterprise aiming to eradicate period poverty in the UK. AXA UK will be providing free, environmentally friendly period products in all their female and gender-neutral washrooms, to help end period poverty and remove the stigma around periods. (AXA UK, 06/12/2022, youTalk Insurance, 'AXA UK helps in the fight against period poverty')

Industry first ‘joint venture’ sees the two players combine to deliver online, fuss-free Motor insurance. In partnership with Covéa, BGL Insurance (BGLi), has announced the launch of nutshell. The new Motor insurance brand for UK drivers promises to shake up the motor market with online, fuss-free cover. (BGL Insurance, 05/12/2022, youTalk Insurance, 'BGL Insurance and Covéa launch new ‘nutshell’ car insurance brand')

RSA has announced the launch of its new low-carbon underwriting policy, effective 1 January 2023, and a commitment to achieving an underwriting portfolio for energy production that is over 75% low carbon by 2030. (RSA, 05/12/2022, youTalk Insurance, 'RSA to launch new low-carbon underwriting policy')

Miller has launched D&O Construct, a new product for the UK Construction sector, designed with Howden Group's specialist underwriting arm Dual. Miller has worked with Dual to design a product that offers companies broader D&O coverage, that according to the broker, plugs the gaps in standard coverage. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 08/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Miller launches new D&O product')

The Ardonagh Group has selected fintech AutoRek to help boost the efficiency of its insurance broker accounting (IBA) processes. AutoRek will support two focal areas of Ardonagh’s IBA operations through the automation of insurer statement reconciliations. The solution involves loading more than 2,500 statements monthly, then reconciliating the information contained in these statements against policy administration systems (PAS) that store client and policy data. After this step, the output of reconciliations will be posted back into Ardonagh PAS systems, ensuring that records are up-to-date.(Mika Pangilinan, 09/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Ardonagh Group taps fintech AutoRek to boost process efficiency')

Mosaic Insurance has announced the launch of a platform to help underwriters evaluate Cyber risk for brokers and insureds. The platform is powered by California-based Safe Security, a provider of cybersecurity and digital risk quantification management. Mosaic will utilise Safe Security’s Cyber risk assessment platform, SAFE, which gives users a real-time view of the extent and nature of a company’s Cyber risk. (Ryan Smith, 09/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Mosaic partners up with Safe Security on cyber risk evaluation')

Mergers & Acquisitions

Independent broker the Romero Group has made its first acquisition, purchasing the Sentient Group. The Sentient Group are HR, employment law, and health and safety specialists, with the Romero Group wishing to expand its offerings in that area. (Emmanuel Kenning, 07/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'ICO fines five firms £435,000 for unlawful “white goods insurance” marketing calls')

Stubben Edge Group has bought tech enabled distribution platform Insurercore. London-headquartered Insurercore was established six years ago. Stubben Edge detailed that the firm connects the insurance market, linking risks with risk appetite and has grown its user base to over 4,600 which it argued made Insurercore “the largest insurance networking platform in Europe”. (Emmanuel Kenning, 07/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Stubben Edge buys Insurercore')

Jensten Group has bought specialist broker Bellegrove, boosting its presence in UK Motor Trade and Fleet insurance. The deal brings £15m of gross written premium, 3,000 clients and 37 staff into the Jensten Group. (Saxon East, 09/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Jensten Group snaps up UK motor broking specialist')

Movers & Shakers

Zurich has appointed David Nichols as UK Head of Retail moving across from being Chief Claims Officer. Nichols will take up the job on 1 January bringing more than 18 years’ experience at Zurich to the post. (Emmanuel Kenning, 06/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Zurich names David Nichols UK head of retail after David Martin exit')

Fiona Andrews, who is retiring from PIB Group at the end of the year, will be succeeded by new Chief People Officer Jo Payne. Joining the insurance intermediary’s executive team, Payne brings more than two decades of people function experience to the group. Her credentials include time spent at the likes of Standard Chartered Bank, T-Mobile, RSA, and Clear Channel International. (Terry Gangcuangco, 08/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'PIB Group welcomes new chief people officer')

There is a new claims proposition manager at Allianz Commercial, with the company announcing a key promotion. Kuldip Kang has moved into the role, with a focus on providing excellent broker and customer service. Earlier in her tenure, she worked as a Business Analyst on the business transfer of the LV= and L&G businesses to Allianz and has scooped numerous industry awards, including Young Professional of the Year from the Insurance Institute of Guildford. (Paul Lucas, 07/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Allianz Commercial announces promotion')

​Managing General Agent Landmark Underwriting has hired a Property Head to mark the company’s expansion into the Property market. Taking the role of Head of Property on January 3 next year is Andrew Ravenscroft, whose Class Underwriter credentials include stints at Brit and Amlin. He will bring more than two decades of industry experience to the London-headquartered agency.(Terry Gangcuangco, 07/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'Landmark Underwriting to enter property market')

AXA XL has announced that Laura Casby has been promoted to Head of Upstream Energy, UK & Lloyd’s, effective immediately. Ms. Casby will lead AXA XL’s Upstream Energy team, covering both offshore and onshore risks. Based in London, she will develop the Upstream Energy book, expanding on and delivering underwriting strategy and product profitability. (AXA XL, 05/12/2022, youTalk Insurance, 'AXA XL promotes Laura Casby to Head of Upstream Energy, UK & Lloyd’s')

Parametric Flood insurance company FloodFlash, the first insurance provider to pay Catastrophic Flood claims as fast as 4 hours after a flood, has announced the hiring of Mark Hara as CEO of North of America. After an extensive search, Hara joins to lead the company’s expansion into the U.S. insurance market, the biggest Flood insurance market in the world. Hara is a seasoned marketing and insurance expert with a proven track record in managing multi-billion dollar brands while at P&G and Nationwide. (FloodFlash, 05/12/2022, youTalk Insurance, 'FloodFlash breaks into US market by hiring Mark Hara as North America CEO')

Consilium has appointed Suzanne Bazire as Chief Operating Officer. Bazire was previously the divisional Operations Director of Retail at Tysers. She began her 20-year insurance career as a Wholesale Account Handler in Aviation and Marine at Tysers before moving to Marsh McLennan for nearly five years. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 09/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 5 - 9 December 2022')

Marshall Bailey has been appointed as Non-Executive Chair of the Aon UK board, effective 31 January 2023.  Bailey succeeds Simon Jeffreys after seven years as Chair. Bailey currently holds a number of non-executive roles. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 09/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 5 - 9 December 2022')

SiriusPoint has appointed Richard Gibbs as President of its international business and CEO of SiriusPoint International Insurance Corporation, it is effective upon regulatory approval. He brings over 24 years of (re)insurance experience and was most recently Director of RSA in the UK. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 09/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 5 - 9 December 2022')

The British Insurance Brokers’ Association has confirmed Aon’s Chief Commercial Officer Jane Kielty will become its Deputy Chair on 1 January taking over from Laura Hancock. Kielty has been on the trade body’s board since taking the Chair of its Insurance Brokers’ Standards Committee in 2020. (Emmanuel Kenning, 08/12/2022, Insurance Age, 'Aon’s Jane Kielty named deputy chair at Biba')

A trio of new Directors have been unanimously selected by the board of WTW as part of its multi-year succession planning process. Joining the WTW board on April 1 next year are Stephen Chipman, Jackie Hunt, and Fredric Tomczyk. Chipman was Chief Executive of Grant Thornton US and Radius, while Hunt’s credentials span time spent at the likes of Aviva, Hibernian Group, PwC, RSA, Standard Life, Prudential Plc, and Allianz. Tomczyk previously served as Vice Chair of Corporate Operations at Toronto-Dominion Bank and as President and CEO of TD Ameritrade. Meanwhile current Directors Brendan O’Neill and Linda Rabbitt have given notice that they will not be standing for re-election at the 2023 annual general meeting due to other commitments and in furtherance of the succession plan. (Terry Gancuangco, 09/12/2022, Insurance Business Mag UK, 'WTW picks three new board members')

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