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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 31st March 2023

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Insurance News

Towergate achieved more than £1bn of gross written premium in 2022 for the first time ever and has set its sights on £1.5bn in just a few years, Chief Executive Richard Tuplin has revealed. Tuplin took on his current job in March last year and found “a huge business with such potential but very complicated”. The Chief Executive restructured it into five “pillars” at the end of 2022, with all the named leaders being internal appointments. (Emmanuel Kenning, 30/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'Towergate targets £1.5bn after breaking through £1bn GWP barrier')

Brokers are cautious about the Chartered Insurance Institute’s pilot proposals to allow individuals to gain chartered status based on experience. The CII is currently trialling the idea, which would grant brokers chartered status without examination so long as they showed substantial experience, passed an oral test, obtained two sponsors, and showed evidence of professionalism. The professional body believes it would only apply to a small number of experienced professionals. (Saxon East, 29/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'Brokers cautious about proposals for chartered status on ‘experience’')

Vitale Digital has become the 42nd British Insurance Brokers’ Association associate. Headquartered in Kent, Vitale Digital specialises in providing the insurance market with technology and digital solutions. The trade body detailed the firm can also offer members expertise and support with their premium builder package, which is a suite of digital solutions designed solely for brokers and MGAs. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 29/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'Vitale Digital becomes Biba associate')

The average cost of car insurance soared by a record 21.1% in the year to February, taking annual bills to £929, according to Consumer Intelligence. Previously, research by aggregatorConfused, in association with broker WTW, set an annual rise for 2022 at 19%. In the latest update by Consumer Intelligence, chief executive Ian Hughes said the 21.1% jump was the largest yearly increase seen since it started tracking premiums in October 2013.(Emmanuel Kenning, 29/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'Motor premiums accelerate again with 21.1% annual increase')

RSA has confirmed pulling out of the UK personal lines motor market, worth £120m in gross written premium, and signing up with Atlanta-owned Swinton on a renewals deal. RSA will continue to offer new business and renewals until 31 August with Swinton, part of the Ardonagh Group, taking up renewals as of 1 September.(Emmanuel Kenning, 28/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'RSA exits personal lines motor shifting renewals to Swinton')

In further news...RSA has reported a pre-tax profit of £65m for 2022 swinging back from a loss in 2021. In 2021 the insurer posted a £228m deficit from continuing operations. The figures then were complicated by the restructure after the takeover by Intact Financial Corporation and Tryg in June 2021. Intact took ownership of the UK and international business. RSA now consists of the UK, Ireland and Continental Europe with operations in the Middle East having been sold on 7 July 2022.(Emmanuel Kenning, 27/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'RSA posts £65m profit for 2022')

Aqueous Underwriting plans to push on SME business having secured new capacity in an initial three-year deal with Allianz Insurance. The managing general agent has targeted growing its presence in the commercial SME market where it specialises in professional indemnity and packages for sectors such as food, hospitality, leisure, and hotels. The new binder agreement is active for all brokers’ submissions incepting from 1 April and allows access to Allianz’s claims services. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 28/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'Aqueous signs three-year capacity deal with Allianz Insurance')

Specialist Risk Insurance Solutions grew gross written premium 20% last year, and the £130m business is eyeing £250m by the end of 2024, Managing Director Oliver Thorne said. SRIS is the retail arm of Specialist Risk Group and has a current headcount of 225 people. “Our growth trajectory over the last three years, since SRG was formed as a brand, we [SRIS] have roughly doubled in size every two years,” said Thorne. (Emmanuel Kenning, 28/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'SRIS eyes £250m GWP within two years')

NFU Mutual has been named a winner of the Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award for 2023 – an award which recognises organisations that put their people at the heart of their business strategy. The rural insurer stands out for having received the Exceptional Workplace Award every year since its inauguration. It also received the forerunner to the Exceptional Workplace Award several years in a row. (Mia Wallace, 30/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'NFU Mutual recognised as 'exceptional workplace'')

To mark the one-year anniversary of its Build Back Better scheme, Flood Re is launching a consumer-focused campaign aimed at promoting the take-up of prevention measures to reduce damage and loss caused by flooding. The initial social media campaign, which will be rolled out from April 1, draws on the results of a commissioned survey of 2000 UK adults, which highlights the most at-risk household items during a flood. This will be supported by a much wider consumer campaign due to run in partnership with the Environment Agency this summer. (Mika Pangilinan, 30/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Flood Re launches campaign to promote flood prevention measures')

The Ardonagh Group has announced its financial results for the 12 months ending 31 December 2022. A year that marked five years since the formation of the Group. One of the highlights included, reported income up 30% to $1.5 billion (2021: $1.2 billion) and Adjusted EBITDA up 22% to $476 million (2021: $390 million). “2022 topped out the vision we had five years ago. We have assembled the foundations and now enter our next phase of growth, driving our internal specialisms and placement opportunities, making accretive acquisitions to our established platforms, leveraging our buying power, and learning from each other to optimise performance across the Group" said Group Chief Executive David Ross. (Ardonagh Group, 27/3/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'The Ardonagh Group anounces 2022 financial results')

Zurich UK detected a 31% increase in fraudulent property claims and a 7% rise in fake casualty claims in 2022, the insurer calculated. The provider said it foiled nearly £200,000 worth of fraud every day last year as cost of living challenges spurred a surge in bogus insurance claims. According to Zurich, added pressure on household finances led to more people turning to fraud. It noted the Insurance Fraud Bureau saw a 17% increase in names added to its register of fraudsters in the 12 months to July last year. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 31/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'Zurich UK detects 31% increase in fraudulent property claims')

Mergers & Acquisitions

AssuredPartners bought South West Brokers, which trades under the name of Westinsure Plymouth. The deal, subject to regulatory approval, will add a further £5m of gross written premium across commercial and personal lines to the consolidator. The new owners confirmed Westinsure founder Brian Jones will continue to lead the team with all staff staying in their roles. (Emmanuel Kenning, 28/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'AssuredPartners continues south-west push with broker buy')

Building on its rapid growth, PIB Group Ltd has announced it has added Grupo VG Europe Correduría de Seguros, S.A. (‘Vetop’) to the family (pending customary approval by the Spanish regulator). The Group is now the fifth largest broker in Spain with revenues of over €24m, led by Spain CEO Martín Navaz. It serves its Spanish clients from 10 offices with a team of over 220 experts. (PIB Group, 27/3/2023, youTalk Insurance, 'PIB Group becomes 5th largest broker in Spain with acquisition of Vetop Internacional')

The 50/50 joint venture between ASX-listed companies AUB Group and PSC Insurance Group that features the UK retail division of London-based brokerage Tysers is expected to become official in May. In an update, AUB said: “As previously announced by AUB Group Limited, it is intended that PSC Insurance will acquire a 50% stake in Tysers’ UK retail division as part of a 50/50 joint venture with AUB." (Terry Gangcuangco, 31/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'AUB, PSC Insurance issue update on Tysers joint venture')

The board at Sampo Plc, following a strategic review, is proposing a partial demerger to separate subsidiary Mandatum from the Sampo Group. In its announcement, Sampo said: “The board of directors proposes that the annual general meeting on May 17, 2023 resolves to approve the partial demerger of Sampo Plc as set forth in the demerger plan approved by the board on March 29, 2023." Without Mandatum, which specialises in life insurance and asset management, Sampo would be left with If P&C Insurance in the Nordic region, Danish non-life insurer Topdanmark, and digital general insurance provider Hastings in the UK. (Terry Gangcuangco, 31/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Hastings parent announces proposal for partial demerger')

International brokerage Gallagher will officially open in Sweden following the integration and rebrand of its three acquired local businesses – Brim, Nordic, and Proinova – starting April 3. With this, Gallagher expands its network comprising more than 130 countries to Sweden and establishes a major foothold in Scandinavia. As part of the integration, the three businesses will come together to see Gallagher having a team of over 65 risk professionals operating across the country, with offices located in Stockholm, Gothenburg, Helsingborg, Växjö and Gislaved.(Kenneth Araullo, 31/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Gallagher continues international expansion')


Steve Dukes was promoted from Chief Operating Officer to CEO at aggregator Confused, succeeding Louise O’Shea. O’Shea stepped down after nearly six years in the post. Dukes joined Confused in 2019 as its first-ever Chief Operating Officer. (Emmanuel Kenning, 28/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'Steve Dukes named Confused CEO')

​Marsh McLennan has announced two appointments to its board of directors. The company has appointed Judith Hartmann and Ray G. Young as Directors, effective immediately. The appointments bring the company’s board membership to a total of 15 Directors. Hartmann served as deputy CEO and Chief Financial Officer of ENGIE, an international energy services company, from 2015 to 2022. Young served as Vice President of Archer-Daniels-Midland Company (ADM) until his retirement last year. (Ryan Smith, 30/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Marsh McLennan adds two to board')

Pen Underwriting UK has broadened its portfolio with the addition of intellectual property (IP) insurance to the managing general agent’s offerings. Leading the new proposition is Erik Alsegard, who is making the switch from Gallagher on April 1 to serve as Pen’s IP Head. His 18 years of IP insurance experience includes time spent at Miller, Munich Re, and CFC Underwriting. (Terry Gangcuangco, 30/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Pen Underwriting UK adds intellectual property to portfolio')

MS Amlin has named Jessica Turner as Head of Risk Analytics, effective 26 June 2023. She joins MS Amlin from Guy Carpenter where she spent over four years as a Managing Director and Head of International Catastrophe Advisory. Prior to this, Turner spent over two years at Lloyds Banking Group as a Senior Manager and has also held positions at Willis Re and RMS. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 31/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 27 - 31 March 2023 - MS Amlin names head of risk analytics')

Tysers has appointed Mark Moore as Director of its energy division. With over 30 years of claims and broking experience, he previously worked at Primassure and has held senior roles in the energy teams at WTW and AAA after starting his career at C E Health. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 31/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 27 - 31 March 2023 - Tysers focuses on energy sector with new appointment')

R&Q Insurance Holdings has made Jeffrey Hayman Non-Executive Chairman with immediate effect. Hayman has spent nearly 40 years in the insurance industry with long tenures at The Travelers and American International Group, including CEO of Global Consumer Insurance and President & CEO of AIU Far East Holdings. He was also board member and Committee Chair of Zurich Insurance Group. Following his appointment, William Spiegel will assume the role for group CEO and Alan Quilter, R&Q’s current CEO, will work exclusively with the programme management teams in the US and UK/Europe before retiring at the end of December 2023. (Sophie Locke-Cooper, 31/3/2023, Insurance Age, 'People Moves: 27 - 31 March 2023 - R&Q reshuffles board with new chairman and CEO change ahead of co-founder Quilter retiring')

AI-powered cyber specialty insurer Corvus Insurance has announced the appointment of Prashanth Gangu as President of the company. Gangu is a veteran of the insurance industry with more than 20 years of experience across strategy, mergers and acquisitions, distribution, product, underwriting, risk, operations, and technology. He joins Corvus from SiriusPoint, where he was Chief Operating Officer and President of its insurance & services division. Prior to this, he was Partner and Head of Americas P&C insurance at Oliver Wyman, a Marsh McLennan company.(Mike Pangilinan, 31/3/2023, Insurance Business UK, 'Corvus Insurance appoints new president')

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