CGU, the UK's largest general insurer, has cut its loss adjuster panel from seven to only four providers — Crawford-THG, GAB Robins, Miller & Pycraft & Arnold, and Woodgate & Clark.

Three loss adjusters including the biggest in the UK, Cunningham Ellis & Buckle, have failed to secure places. The other two are McLarens Toplis and Davies Chartered Loss Adjusters.

Competition for the lucrative contracts, which analysts say will be worth millions, has been fierce.

Alex Gargolinski, marketing manager at McLarens Toplis, said his company's success in the last few months may have counted against it.

“We have won numerous contracts recently, which might have affected CGU's decision,” he said.

“While it is always disappointing not to win a contract, our recent success has softened the blow and our turnover has increased substantially in the last year.”

The news will come as a relief to Crawford-THG, which has been pipped at the post for a couple of lucrative deals recently, including the panel places for Zurich and Prudential.

Both contracts were won by rivals Cunningham Ellis & Buckle and McLarens Toplis.

Crawford-THG operations manager George Moss said: “In the last twelve months we have overhauled the way in which we conduct our business.

“It has meant fundamental changes and has, at times, called into question traditional loss adjusting methods. It has been a difficult process, but we felt that it was necessary to ensure that we could meet the future needs of insurers.”

CGU director of claims Arthur Singleton said the loss adjuster panel will operate as an extension of CGU Insurance's claims arm with a breakthrough performance strategy to be defined and implemented during the next 12 to 18 months.