Top broker snubs newly-launched Xchanging electronic filing system

Aon's UK arm is piloting a repository service developed by business process manager August Group.

The move means Aon will not be joining the Xchanging Ins-sure Services market repository launched two weeks ago.

A senior market participant, who asked not to be named, said he believed Aon's decision was a big blow to Xchanging. "I think Marsh is also developing its own repository and because it has such a large part of the market... Xchanging will now have to ask itself where its buying is going to come from," he said.

Aon business operations director

Bill Oram said the August repository, called Advance, was chosen because it allowed easy integration with the systems and processes that August had already completed for Aon.

"When you look at the marketplace, there were always going to be multiple repository solutions," he said.

Advance is managed by August and hosted by its partner, Digex. The repository will be piloted over the next three months by selected divisions within Aon to work with markets in both London and overseas.

Advance will enable Aon to electronically share documents with underwriters and other parties involved in the claims management process.

The aim is to streamline existing paper-based processes, improve operational efficiencies, increase productivity and reduce costs.

August Group chief executive David Ives said there were many similarities between August's repository and Xchanging's system. But, he said, Advance would be better suited for companies that conducted the majority of their business outside the London Market.

"We're very interested in the way large brokers in this marketplace deal with large overseas underwriters as well," he said.

He added that August wanted to be in a position where companies could use both repositories and where both repositories could talk to each other.

"If we're all going to compete on a level playing field, there has to be an exchange of information between the market bureau systems and independent repositories run by independent trading entities in the London Market."