Blog Img

General Insurance Newsletter Friday 13th January 2023

Back to Blogs

Insurance News

Allianz Commercial has revealed it detected £70.7m worth of insurance fraud in 2022, up 11.2% on the £63.6m uncovered the year before. The insurer noted that Property and Casualty saw the greatest increase in fraud savings against the prior year. Despite the number of fraud cases declining, it said the value of each case increased to record levels. (Insurance Age Reporter, 11/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Allianz Commercial reports detected fraud up 11.2%')

Ignite Insurance Systems has launched Ignition, an accelerator programme to help start-up insurance brokers create and grow their own businesses. The policy administration software house committed to targeting a 50/50 split of female/male founders via promoting the accelerator through women in insurance networks and having no requirement to apply beyond some commercial experience.(Emmanuel Kenning, 11/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Ignite launches start-up broker accelerator with gender balance target')

The findings of a survey, which revealed that nearly half of brokers interviewed were not aware of the Financial Conduct Authority’s Consumer Duty rules, is a ‘big concern’, according to compliance experts. As reported in Insurance Age, an Ecclesiastical survey of 250 brokers has revealed only 53% are aware of the regulation. It also found that three in five brokers admit they don’t understand how the regulations will impact their business.(Saxon East, 11/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Shock survey results reveal broker ignorance on Consumer Duty is ‘a big concern'')

The Financial Conduct Authority has opened a consultation on protections for insurance customers in financial difficulty proposing to update guidance introduced during the Covid-19 crisis. The watchdog published finalised guidance in November 2020 for insurance and premium finance firms to support customers in financial difficulty due to the pandemic. This followed on from temporary measures being put into place in May 2020. (Emmanuel Kenning, 11/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'FCA opens client support consultation and reiterates need for brokers to treat customers fairly')

Tokio Marine Kiln has launched its inaugural Life Sciences insurance product, Intellimed, staking a claim for a Lloyd’s market first. The insurer explained that Intellimed offers specialist and bespoke coverage for Life Sciences risks, ranging from traditional medical device and pharmaceuticals through to novel smart medtech products and telemedicine services, and new apps in development. (Emmanuel Kenning, 10/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'TMK moves into life sciences with Intellimed product launch')

Jon Newall’s start-up broker, Prosura, is targeting £10m of gross written premium within five years. Newall began trading at the beginning of the year with his five-person team from an office in Wakefield. Newall sold his shareholding in his former business, Lockyers, to Ethos Broking in 2018. He exited the firm in November 2020 after 25 years with the business. (Saxon East, 10/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Start-up broker Prosura targets £10m GWP in five years')

Thomas Carroll Insurance Brokers has launched a new insurtech company, TCi Futures. The Caerphilly headquartered broker said the new brand will focus on “developing innovative tech solutions that will help the broker market keep pace with online markets, and ultimately provide an improved purchasing experience for their end customers”.(Insurance Age Reporter, 10/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Thomas Carroll launches insurtech start-up TCi Futures')

TigerRisk Partners is now known as Howden Tiger, following completion of Howden Group’s purchase of the risk, capital, and strategic advisor. Announced last June, the now finalised transaction makes Howden the fourth largest global reinsurance broker. The combination also paved the way for the creation of Howden Tiger SabRE, which spans the global managing general agent and programme capabilities of TigerRisk and Howden RE.(Terry Gangcuangco, 12/1/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Howden Group completes TigerRisk swoop – latter's rebrand takes effect')

The charity group Insurance United Against Dementia (IUAD) has announced that its annual Insurance Day of Giving 2022 managed to raise over £170,000 thanks to the help of generous insurance businesses. Preparations and registration for the event started as far back as November 2022. IUAD had also announced that it was holding a virtual balloon race as part of the event.(Lyle Adriano, 12/1/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'IUAD ends 2022 with successful fundraising campaign')

The UK Government has this week accepted the recommendation to mandate sustainable drainage systems for new home developments in England to reduce the risk of surface water and sewerage flooding and relieve pressure on traditional systems. This follows AXA UK’s recommendations as part of its Building for the Future report in which it specifies solutions to reduce surface water and sewerage flooding, improve biodiversity and help future-proof the built environment. (AXA, 12/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'Government accepts AXA UK’s recommendation to make sustainable drainage systems mandatory for new homes')

In further news...AXA has announced that it renewed the mandate of the AXA Research Fund for a further five years. According to the global insurer, the AXA Research Fund seeks to strengthen the transdisciplinary exploration of emerging risks, consolidate the links between academic experts, industry and the public sector around major societal issues, and disseminate scientific knowledge through innovative formats. (Gabriel Olano, 13/1/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'AXA renews its research fund for five-year period')

Markerstudy has taken a £16m hit on the value of its Brightside business, according to the group's latest accounts. Markerstudy Group Limited’s accounts state that the purchased goodwill of Brightside Insurance Services Limited was £26.4m on 31 December 2021. This is before an impairment charge of £15.9m. The charge is the main factor in bringing down the net book value’s purchased goodwill from £26.4m to £7.8m. (Saxon East, 12/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Markerstudy takes £16m hit on its Brightside business value')

Mergers & Acquisitions

Global Risk Partners has made its third purchase of 2023, snapping up BPW Insurance Services in its first Welsh buy of the year. GRP has already unveiled the buys of Rickmansworth-based commercial broker Christopher Trigg and managing general agent Nucleus Underwriting in the first fortnight of the year. In 2022 the consolidator bought Swansea-based Prescott Jones as it struck several buys in Wales. Founded in 1983, BPW is a Retail insurance broker based in Newport specialising in Commercial and Property insurance. (Emmanuel Kenning, 12/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'GRP buys BPW in South Wales')

In further news, Global Risk Partners has acquired 100% of the share capital of Nucleus Underwriting Limited (Nucleus). It is the first MGA acquired under the group’s new owners Brown & Brown, Inc. and the deal has been approved by the FCA. Aylesbury-based Nucleus is a specialist MGA that provides insurance to the Lifesciences, R&D and Specialist Manufacturing sectors.(Global Risk Partners, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'GRP buys first MGA since its acquisition by Brown & Brown')

Morton Insurance has bought the private hire business of fellow London-based broker Export & General Insurance Services for an undisclosed sum. The policies will transfer over as they come up for renewal, Morton’s Managing Director Adrian Morton explained. The firm, which has three staff, will not be taking any employees as part of the buy. It is the first acquisition Morton Insurance has made for more than 20 years, and the company is planning to strike more deals.(Emmanuel Kenning, 12/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Morton Insurance buys private hire business of Export & General Insurance Services')

Jensten Group has bought Coversure Kidderminster for an undisclosed amount, following on from the purchases of Coversure offices in Nottingham and Stamford last year. As revealed last week by Insurance Age, Jensten spent £36.2m on acquisitions in the year to 31 March 2022 having spent £36m the year before. The Kidderminster deal brings 1,700 commercial clients and nine staff to the group joining Jensten Insurance Brokers. Jensten detailed that the acquisition will form the base of its retail regional presence in the Midlands, which it plans to develop through further acquisitions and organic growth. (Emmanuel Kenning, 11/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Jensten’s Coversure targeting 10 more franchise offices in 2023')

​France-headquartered brokerage Verlingue, which has 24 offices in Europe and is the parent company of UK-based Verlingue Ltd, has made two acquisitions. Snapped up for an undisclosed sum were insurance broker Cabinet Depeyre and underwriting agency Depeyre Solutions. The latter specialises in business risks for brokers and general agents, while Cabinet Depeyre is an expert in consulting and management of complex business risks. Jean-Michel Depeyre, who heads both firms, commented: “With Verlingue, I firmly believe that our teams will be able to provide even better support to our customers and provide them with all the solutions offered by a company with which we already share common values and a vision of our role as a trusted partner in risk management.”(Terry Gangcuangco, 12/1/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Verlingue makes double swoop')

JMG Group has started the year as it means to go on with two acquisitions which help strengthen its position in the South of England and in Scotland. The burgeoning £205m GWP Group has acquired Southampton-based Knightsure Insurance Brokers in a deal that sees the Group purchase 100% of the £1.8m GWP boutique corporate insurance broker business. Its second acquisition is of £1.5m GWP T I Alexander Insurance Brokers in Bo’ness by Scotland-based JMG Group company Greenwood Moreland. Scott Alexander, former Owner of T I Alexander, will join the Greenwood Moreland team, primarily supported from its Bathgate office. The acquisition will provide eventual succession for the T I Alexander business and in the meantime will allow Scott to build on the success of the business with the support of a broader team.(JMG Group, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'JMG Group acquires two regional brokers')

Movers & Shakers

Wayne Tonge has taken on the Managing Director role at PIB-owned Barbon Insurance Group. Tonge will report to Barbon CEO Andy Halstead. The move sees Tonge leave his Managing Director position at the Ardonagh-owned Property Initiatives Underwriting Agency, following seven years at the managing general agent. (Saxon East, 12/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'Wayne Tonge takes on major role within PIB Group')

Earnix, a provider of cloud-based intelligent real-time, dynamic pricing and rating solutions for insurers and banks, has appointed Robin Gilthorpe as its new CEO, effective February 1, 2023. An insurance and fintech industry veteran, Gilthorpe brings over 25 years of experience as a successful business leader to the executive role. (Roxanne Libatique, 12/1/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Earnix appoints insurance and fintech veteran as new CEO')

Markel International has promoted Carys Lawton-Bryce to Chief Operating Officer, subject to regulatory approval. Lawton-Bryce will also be part of the executive committee (ExCo) for the international business. Lawton-Bryce has 17 years of experience in the insurance industry, having held roles across operations, change and IT. She joined Markel in August 2021 as Wholesale Operations Director. (Gabriel Olano, 12/1/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Markel International appoints chief operating officer')

ARAG has appointed Laura-Jo Howard to the strategically important position of BTE Underwriting Manager. At the end of last year, the CII announced that Laura-Jo had won the Alison Ecob Memorial prize, as a result of her performance in completing the Advanced Diploma in Insurance and achieving the highest mark in the Risk Management in Insurance module. Laura-Jo started her insurance career at Direct Line Group, shortly after graduating from university, and joined ARAG’s BTE Underwriting team as an Underwriting Assistant, in 2011. (ARAG, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'ARAG appoints CII prize winner to key underwriting role')

BIBA has extended Jonathan Evans’ tenure as Chair for a further 3 years. Evans has a background in law, particularly insurance law which led to a number of insurance board positions. He served two decades as an MP and MEP and was formerly a Corporate Affairs Minister with responsibility for the insurance industry.  He also chaired the All Party Parliamentary Group on Insurance and Financial Services. (BIBA, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'BIBA extends Jonathan Evans’ tenure as Chair for a further 3 years')

AXA XL has announced that Stephanie Coxall has been promoted to Head of Underwriting Management, UK & Lloyd’s, effective 16 January. Ms. Coxall began her career with NFU Mutual before joining the business (then Catlin) in 2012, where she progressed through several underwriting positions. Most recently, she held a global learning & development role, responsible for leading the AXA XL Academies for Underwriting, Claims and Reinsurance. (AXA XL, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'AXA XL promotes Stephanie Coxall to Head of Underwriting Management, UK & Lloyd’s')

Allianz Commercial is strengthening the underwriting capacity of its Construction business in London. Engineering Construction & Power (EC&P) has appointed Arshad Rashid as Regional Underwriting Manager for London. Arshad has worked for Allianz since 2003 when he joined the graduate scheme. Since then, he has worked in various underwriting roles in Commercial Lines, most recently as a Property and Casualty Underwriting Manager in Maidstone responsible for the successful delivery of local plans and developing underwriting expertise, as well as building and growing broker relationships. (Alliance, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'Allianz appoints new Regional Underwriting Manager for Engineering Construction & Power')

Aston Lark, a Howden company, has announced (9 January 2023) two senior appointments, signalling the firm’s continued growth and focus on client outcomes. Aston Lark recently announced the expansion of its UK footprint through two new regional offices in South Wales and the Thames Valley. Heading up Aston Lark’s new Thames Valley office will be Alistair Matthews, who brings with him more than 20 years of experience in the insurance sector, most recently as Area Managing Director for Towergate Insurance Brokers. Also joining Aston Lark is Lee Parr, as Associate Director in Aston Lark’s Commercial division. Lee has joined to lead the Derby office, to help expand Aston Lark’s reach, and deliver more support and advice to clients in the East Midlands and South Yorkshire. (Aston Lark, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'Aston Lark appoints new Regional Director')

Liberty Specialty Markets (LSM), part of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, announced the appointment of Carl Faulkner to the newly-created role of Head of Digital Strategy for Continental Europe. Faulkner joins LSM from BNP Paribas where he was Head of Digital for five years. During his career there, he held the roles of Distribution and Transformation Director in Japan and Head of Global Insurance E-Business in Paris. He has significant experience in the European insurance market, having led Chubb’s E-Commerce sales and distribution across 20 EMEA countries. (Liberty Specialty Markets, 9/1/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'Liberty Specialty Markets appoints Head of Digital Strategy for Continental Europe')

Shirel Stedman has been appointed to the board of Flood Re as a Non-Executive Director starting on 16 January. Stedman brings more than 30 years’ experience as a Civil Engineer, and has spent most of her career working in flood resilience, climate change, and water issues across the public and private sector.(Emmanuel Kenning, 13/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 9 – 13 January 2023')

Miller has recruited Steve Moore as an Account Executive in its sports and entertainment team. Moore brings more than 30 years of industry experience, spending the majority of his career at SBJ, which has since become Marsh Commercial. He joins from Towergate where he spent the past five years of his career in branch and area management. (Emmanuel Kenning, 13/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 9 – 13 January 2023')

Convex Group has promoted Brian Bissett to Group Chief Finance Officer with immediate effect. Benji Meuli will be stepping aside to become Chief Investment Officer. Bissett joined Convex at its inception in 2019 as Group Chief Actuary. (Emmanuel Kenning, 13/1/2023, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 9 – 13 January 2023')

International insurance brokerHowdenhas appointed Federico Casini as Chief Executive for Italy. According to Howden’s Press release, Casini spent 17 years at Aon SpA prior to making the switch. He was in charge of Aon’s Italian operations in his capacity as Executive Chair. Now, at Howden Italy, Casini will lead the country’s third largest broker.(Terry Gangcuangco, 13/1/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Howden names CEO for Italian operations')

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