Development Director Adrian Scott discusses how Geo Specialty thinks differently
Authored by Geo
Development Director of Geo, Adrian Scott talks to Broker Network about Geo's product portfolio and how Geo Specialty is building a business that thinks differently to other markets.
So, there’s Geo Underwriting and Geo Specialty, can you explain the difference between the two?
Put simply, Geo Underwriting is our MGA’s main group company name and is essentially used as a trading style for Personal Lines. Whereas, Geo Specialty is a trading style of the Geo Underwriting Group and is now the principal commercial proposition under the brand. However, we have no plans of it becoming just another traditional commercial player.
What is Geo Speciality’s focus for 2019?
We are building a business that thinks differently to other markets. We understand your distribution challenges and support them by delivering a range of specialist products and services designed to complement your current traditional markets. Our intention is to work with brokers on placement opportunities in the UK regional market for those risks where your conventional propositions and e-trade models fall short.
Can you tell us a little more about Geo Specialty and what it offers brokers and their clients?
We understand that there’s been a bit of confusion recently around our offering but it is actually quite simple; we offer Terrorism, Construction, Liability and Sports, Leisure & Entertainment insurance to UK brokers. We are focused on providing you with solutions that offer a point of difference.
- Sports, Leisure & Entertainment covers:
- Leisure centres and sports clubs
- Events, both large or small
- Entertainment venues, including late night license bars and restaurants
- Specialist sports schemes for equipment / PA / PL / travel.
- Liability and Construction covers:
- High risk liability for heavy manufacturing processes and contractors
- Contract works and plant covers either as part of a combined solution or on a standalone basis.
- Terrorism covers:
- UK risks with limits of up to £188m, including key business interruption features not available from Pool Re. It also offers wider definitions of what constitutes Terrorism to protect your clients against lone wolf, idealist attacks.
What do you think about the role of the MGA in the broker market?
MGAs are definitely seen as a credible, stable and accepted part of the insurance market, and with this comes greater emphasis on not only being better underwriters but also bringing something different. Whether you’re on Lime Street or in the regions, just simply replicating what insurers or capacity providers do isn’t enough anymore. MGAs have to deliver genuine value to their partners, and this isn’t just about product, it’s about the whole business mix.
As expenses get squeezed at the top end, that comes down the chain. So, the trick for an MGA isn’t just to be good at what you do from an underwriting perspective, you have to be more effective and deliver more efficiently than anyone else, certainly over your capacity providers. Otherwise, there is no value to them working with an MGA.
By putting underwriting at the heart of our MGA, this means going out and getting what we believe are the best underwriters. We underwrite from start to finish – we create the proposition, develop the wordings and set the pricing. As a virtual insurer, you must be able to demonstrate your pricing model, and that is something reinsurers respect.
How is Geo Specialty working with Broker Network Members?
We acknowledge that most Members may not be placing risks outside of the appetite of traditional markets, so we know being at the forefront of your minds is a challenge. However, we strongly believe we can be your default choice in our specialisms and are excited about the prospect of engaging with more Broker Networ Members, helping you to expand the potential of winning business.
An example of this is supporting you with a product like our Terrorism solution where the default maybe Pool Re. We would love to talk to you about Geo Speciality as an alternative for your clients where there is a terrorism risk requirement. We believe that the specialist nature of our product proposition could potentially open up new distribution opportunities for Members, and by working with us we can help to drive sector ownership into your business models.
The Geo journey has begun.
An exciting future lies ahead as our Towergate businesses move over to Geo. From 1 February 2018, our personal lines business joins Geo Specialty in operating under the Geo brand. The move marks the next step in a programme of change as we transform into an agile MGA structured for long term success in an evolving insurance market.
Our commercial businesses will soon also move over to Geo, completing the operational phase of the transition. But that’s by no means the end of it. We’re on a journey to make a difference. To carriers. To brokers. To the industry as a whole. Geo is the start of that journey.
We look forward to sharing it with you.
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