Ageas Retail chief exec warned delegates at the Insurance Times Broking In The Motor Revolution conference about the “unintended consequences” of an unfair regulatory landscape

Broking in the Motor Revolution

Brokers need to influence regulation to create a fair market that will also be sustainable for customers, Ageas Retail and Distribution chief executive Mark Cliff told delegates at the Insurance Times Broking In The Motor Revolution event.

The Ageas Retail broking chief executive said the regulator was challenging brokers on how the market operated around dual pricing, how they sold add-ons, and what they were doing about annual percentage rates (APRs) and sales incentives.

Cliff said: “These are all some of the issues we have all been grappling with as we come under scrutiny and really looking and saying - have we got the right business model to survive and adapt in this environment.

“My view is they are here to stay. We can spend our energy fighting tooth and nail to keep things the way they were or we can engage, influence and guide the regulation to create a fair market where we can do business in a way that supports and is sustainable for customers.

“We believe the time and effort [we put into engaging with the regulator] creates an understanding of our business, transparency in how we operate, and helps us resolve issues when they emerge. That relationship and empathy are vital to us being able to operate in the way we do.

“There is no choice - we need to adapt and change in the regulatory environment and create a level playing field for all.”

Cliff warned that if regulatory changes were not applied fairly and consistently it could damage business models.

He added: “I worry that sometimes about the law of unintended consequences. Getting people to change their business model when they are not asking that of other people in the market, or they give 12 months for change to take place, how are they monitoring that change?

“There are no prizes for going first and indeed to change while others are not, is tantamount to committing commercial suicide.”