It seems like only yesterday that insurance companies were filing their 2017 results, but now here comes the first batch of 2018 reporting – and what a start it’s been for Hastings Group.
The technology driven insurance provider has enjoyed quite the first quarter. Its live customer policies have increased 10% year-on-year to 2.67 million (up from 2.42 million), market share has climbed from 6.7% to 7.4%, and gross written premiums have leapt by 5% compared to the same quarter in 2017 to stand at £226 million.
Overall, the company was able to report net revenue up 18% to £735.6 million for the 12-month period ending on March 31, with a 12% leap compared to the comparative quarter last year at £184.5 million.
“I’m pleased to announce another consecutive quarter of profitable growth,” said Toby van der Meer, the firm’s CEO. “We have again grown our market share, to 7.4%, and now serve 2.7 million customers, up 10% on last year. We remain on track to deliver on our targets, including achieving three million customers during 2019 while maintaining our underwriting discipline and strong capital position.”
The achievement came despite what the group described as “higher than expected” claims costs due to snowy and icy conditions. As for the reasons behind the success, the company pointed to its digital initiatives – in particular, its phased rollout of Guidewire which now handles 500,000 policies and 95% of all claims; the chance for customers to make changes to policies digitally; and a successful digital total loss pilot. It has also recruited more than 200 employees in Bexhill and Leicester.
“During the quarter we further enhanced our digital capabilities and continued the successful rollout of our new operational platform,” the CEO added. “We effectively traded through another competitive period for UK motor insurance, seeing good growth, in particular, in March and April. Our digital, data driven and agile business model leaves us well positioned to take advantage of continued consumer switching and growth of digital channels.”