Beazley PLC records premium growth amid COVID-related losses
- US$3.56bn gross premiums written (a 19% increase on 2019)
- $50.4m overall pre-tax losses (a 250% difference from 2019’s $268m profit)
- Earnings per share fell 119% from 35p to 6.3p
COVID-19 blamed for the loss
David Roberts, Chair of Beazley, recognised the results as “disappointing” and indicated that payouts resulting from events being cancelled and postponed by the pandemic shouldered the majority of the blame.
The ongoing uncertainty caused by the virus also resulted in the board vetoing the declaration of a dividend at the end of 2020.
“In total our booked first-party losses related to COVID-19 have reached $340m. We took action when we saw that COVID-19 was likely to impact the economy, and this strategy, allied with our underwriting action over the previous year in anticipation of a future recession, will mitigate the impact in our longer tail liability classes, where claims are expected to materialise from 2021 onwards.”
Maintaining optimism for insurance in 2021
As indicated by Roberts’ statement, Beazley still struck a resolutely optimistic and enterprising tone when considering the insurance industry’s future, as well as the company’s place within it.
CEO Andrew Horton chose to focus on the report’s positives, particularly premium growth:
"Beazley's gross premiums written increased by 19% to $3,563.8m, supported by rate rises across most of our divisions. We also achieved a strong investment income in the face of volatile conditions.
“I am very positive about the year ahead. We have the capital strength to support our growth plans and look forward to a continued favourable rate environment and expansion of our specialist products globally. I am confident we can return to paying dividends during the course of 2021".
Tribe and APOLLO announce national insurance campaign
Tribe Property Technologies in partnership with APOLLO insurance has announced a national insurance campaign to digitise insurance for condominium owners, renters, landlords, and developers across Canada. The aim of the campaign is to make insurance access easier and faster for owners while improving the coverage and protection of condominiums and rental buildings.
According to several surveys, nearly half of 4.5mn rented houses in Canada do not have tenant insurance protection, meaning those individuals and their families are put at risk of fire and water damage.
What does the national insurance campaign include?
According to Tribe, the company is working with APOLLO to ensure that this type of insurance is easier to access. It aims to achieve this by introducing a direct connection to APOLLO's insurance technology from both Tribe's strata and condo management platform and rental software to allow for increased education and awareness for owners into insurance risks and options.
It also includes the future ability for notifications for mid-term cancellations, and plans to offer protection from potential strata/condo corporation deductibles, Tribe said.
"We are excited to partner with APOLLO to bring accessibility, visibility, and education around insurance options to our communities and reflect the current lifestyle expectations of condo owners and residents while protecting the value of their biggest assets", said Joseph Nakhla, Chief Executive Officer of Tribe.
Nakhla added: “This agreement with APOLLO is just the first step under our Digital Services & Partnerships revenue pillar. We will continue to layer on services to drive revenue for Tribe, and bring convenience and savings for our users, with the goal of being able to offer a one-stop-shop to our development partners and the over 100,000 residents in Tribe-managed communities”.
APOLLO uses technology as a channel between insurance brokers, carriers, and their mutual clients, offering insurance options from multiple companies on one integrated online platform.
"We like that Tribe is taking a fresh approach to condo living and building smart homes through tech-enabled service, and an integration with their Community Platform supports our goals of making insurance more accessible and supporting the needs of communities”, said Jeff McCann, Chief Executive Officer of Apollo.