Alligator will help brokers find niche risk cover

Steve Burrows Cobra

Cobra chief executive Steve Burrows (pictured) is set to launch an insurance search engine called Alligator to help brokers find cover for niche risks, Insurance Times can reveal.

Alligator will be a free website that lets all brokers place unusual risks by searching a large database of insurers and scheme providers. Brokers can then click through to the providers’ websites to get quotes. It will launch next month.

Alligator is led by former Cobra IT director Peter Bright, while Burrows will double up as Alligator managing director. The company running the website is called Alligator Systems, and its four staff will be based at Cobra Network’s Croydon offices.

The Cobra boss said that Alligator would solve the problem brokers have of finding cover for niche risks, and that Alligator would compete with the Kluwer’s Insurance Buyers Guide and website.

Burrows said: “Imagine a Yellow Pages for business, and put that in the context of insurance. What Alligator has done is built a portal for all schemes, insurers’ websites, Lloyd’s websites and the like, and listed them on a Google-type system.

“It has information about the companies and contact details and it then has links off the individual entries, including a direct link to their website.

“You can search for any type of product or insurer, or broker, or scheme provider and it will list in front of you all those facilities that are available.”

He added that many smaller niche Lloyd’s insurers had shown interest in signing up to Alligator as a way to reach more UK brokers.

Burrows said: “There are about 30 schemes on it which we’re testing at the moment, and the feedback we’ve had from members has been very good so far.”

Alligator staff can also build websites for insurance suppliers that want to be listed but have no quote and buy option on their current website. Cobra makes money from Alligator by charging a monthly fee to the providers.

Burrows said that in the future Alligator will let brokers compare several quotes at once.