Broker's revenue increased 48% in 2010, as it moved to a multi-insurer panel model

It could be at least 2012 before broking group Brightside sees the full benefit of last year’s eCar acquisition, the firm said in its 2010 results announcement.

Brightside bought eCar, along with eBike, from insurance company Southern Rock in June last year.

The two units started trading as part of Brightside at the beginning of July.

Since buying eCar, Brightside has worked at changing the online broker from a single-insurer model to a multi-insurer panel model – a transition that continued into 2011. The panel now comprises Groupama, Aviva, AXA, Ageas, LV=, Provident and Allianz, as well as former parent Southern Rock.

eCar’s post acquisition policy sales totalled 79,252. Brightside expects the continued development of eCar’s panel to add further impetus for growth through enhanced new business conversion rates; enhanced renewal retention rates; the generation of additional opportunities for Brightside’s offline car brokerage from unconverted eCar quotes; and the generation of additional premium finance opportunities.

However, the firm added: “While we remain excited about the potential of eCar, we anticipate that its full benefit will not be reflected in the group’s results until 2012 at the earliest, when the panel has been in operation for a full renewals cycle.”

Brightside made a profit after tax of £6.5m for the full year of 2010, up 40% on the £4.7m it made in 2009. The broker’s 2010 revenue increased 48% to £66.2m from £44.7m on the back of a 63% increase in total policy sales to 339,916 (2009: 207,509).