Motor drives growth as Esure cuts back home business

Stuart Vann

Esure has cut back its home business in the first quarter of 2017 amid a “challenging” market, the company said in a trading update this morning.

Esure’s gross written premium (GWP) in home, its smallest book of business, shrank by 4.5% to £21.1m in the first quarter of 2017 from £22.1m in the same quarter last year, and in-force home policies fell 5.9% to 543,000 from 577,000.

Chief executive Stuart Vann (pictured) said: “In home, the market remains challenging and we continue to temper our growth as we do not believe current market conditions provide opportunities for profitable growth.

“However, the home portfolio continues to deliver a positive contribution to the group.”

Group growth

Esure cuts back home business as GWP for the group as a whole increased by 24.1% to £187.4m (Q1 2016: £151m).

This was driven by a 29% jump in motor GWP to £166.3m (Q1 2016: £128.9m), partly fuelled by rate changes triggered by the cut in the Ogden discount rate.

Vann said: “In Motor, along with the market, we have started to increase pricing in response to the change in the Ogden discount rate and continued our growth momentum.”

The company also saw an 11% increase in additional services revenues to £28.2m (Q1 2016: £25.4m).

Vann said: “Overall, we have started 2017 better than we expected and we are firmly on track to deliver results at the more positive end of the 2017 guidance we issued at the time of our 2016 full year results in March.”