FSA rules persuade Allianz Cornhill to make vets appointed representatives

Allianz Cornhill Animal Health (ACAH), known for its Petplan brand, is to act as principal agent for vets that sell its pet insurance product.

The move is in stark contrast to other insurers, who are looking to distance themselves from their secondary intermediaries.

A spokesman for ACAH said: "The division is strongly intermediated, dealing mainly through vets, breeders and re-homing charities - with vets being the largest group. FSA regulation has forced us to make a decision about how we deal with these channels.

"If we want to continue to do business in the way we have done up until now, we will need vets to become appointed representatives. Otherwise we would lose a significant amount of new business."

Vets account for 35%-40% of ACAH's £125m a year premium income. ACAH is looking to sign up around 1,200 vets by the end of June.

The spokesman said that ACAH would not be keen for its vets to sell other providers' products. "We are looking for exclusivity, although they can be introducers for our competitors," he said.

Introducers can only display product information; they cannot advise on or arrange insurance policies.