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12 October 2020

Proceeding with caution: A survey of MGA and insurance carrier opinion on the state of the MGA sector

12 October 2020 Insurance & Reinsurance

Introduction

We are pleased to present our second report on the managing general agent (MGA) market - and one which is set against a backdrop that could not be more different than our first.

Last year, our first research among MGAs and carriers made it clear that the Lloyd's market reform programme was having the desired effect. The market, which had been perceived by many as supporting under-performance and inflated costs for far too long, had a sense of increasing caution. Over two thirds of MGAs and carriers agreed that they were heading into a more competitive environment. A tight focus on quality also meant that capacity was in short supply, and for many small MGAs, Brexit still loomed large.

This year's report, which is based on a survey and interviews with leading insurance carriers and MGAs, provides an update on the state of the market and the insurer-MGA relationship. It looks at the impact of COVID-19 on the sector and the future of London and Lloyd's as the preferred markets for growing and developing an MGA business.

Our survey shows that while the overwhelming majority of carriers and MGAs agree there will be more competition for capacity and a real flight to quality, they do not see the volume of capacity or the number of partnerships diminishing. In fact, broadly two thirds of MGAs and carriers believe relationships will hold steady or even increase and over half of carriers believe the impact of COVID-19 will be neutral or even positive for MGA capacity.

Jennette Newman, Partner, London

 

About the report

Produced

12 October 2020

Location:

UK & Europe

Written by:

Ivor Edwards

Ivor Edwards

Partner

Jennette Newman

Jennette Newman

Partner

Toby Rogers

Toby Rogers

Partner

Read time

10 mins

Download
About the report

Produced

12 October 2020

Location:

UK & Europe

Written by:

Ivor Edwards

Ivor Edwards

Partner

Jennette Newman

Jennette Newman

Partner

Toby Rogers

Toby Rogers

Partner

Read time

10

Download

Key findings - at a glance

Two thirds of carriers and MGAs think the number of relationships will hold steady or increase in 2020, even in a hardening market.

Key findings - at a glance

Proceeding with caution

  • Although 88% of carriers and 83% of MGAs agree that setting up a new MGA will be harder this year, existing players feel secure
  • 64% of carriers and 66% of MGAs think the number of relationships will hold steady or increase in 2020, even in a hardening market
  • Over half (51%) of carriers say the impact on capital availability will be positive or neutral post COVID-19

Becoming more demanding

  • Carriers will use MGAs to give access to new markets and provide technical insight and capability
  • Cost is no longer a top priority for carriers, cited by only 18% 
  • Carriers have three 'top asks' of MGAs, cited by over 50% of our sample: access, insight and conduct
  • MGAs have one outstanding priority - market reputation, cited by 67% 
  • 96% of carriers and 84% of MGAs believe the shift to electronic placement and data standardisation will accelerate as a result of COVID-19

Lloyd's reform agenda sees choices crystallising

  • Lloyd's has become less desirable as a home for developing MGA business over the last year as market reforms take time to bed in

End

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