Voted by The Judging Panel
Sponsored by Royal & SunAlliance
We are delighted to have won the prestigious Large Broker of the Year category at the 2003 Insurance Times Awards.
Boncaster is one of the top 10 brokers in the UK, specialising in personal lines insurance. It is the telebroking arm of Cox Insurance and has over 500,000 customers sourced through affinity partners with names such as Age Concern, Volkswagen, Harley-Davidson and Argos, insurance administration on behalf of other brokers and through its own brand, insure.
In considering Boncaster for this award, the judges recognised the significant achievements realised by the company and which resulted in it being one of the most successful periods in Boncaster's 72-year history. The review, restructuring and re-engineering of the business led to major investments in people and planning and resource techniques.
This not only improved all key productivity and efficiency measures significantly but also reduced staff turnover and enhanced service standards considerably.
At the same time a Polaris panel was developed and introduced for private car business extending the number of insurers from five to 16 and significantly improving new business conversion rates.
The combination of the initiatives undertaken during the year also led to real commercial success with operating profit increasing by 40% in 2002 on the previous year and a further 26% in the first half of 2003.
In receiving this award, the management team at Boncaster would like to take this opportunity to recognise the hard work and dedication of all its staff and to thank its partners and customers for their ongoing support.
Kwik-Fit Insurance Services
Kwik-Fit Insurance Services (KFIS) is delighted to have been successful in this category - particularly that our innovative route to market and the ongoing commitment of our people has been recognised through this award.
KFIS employs over 850 people at a call centre outside Glasgow providing motor, household and other related products. Our connection with the Kwik-Fit Autocentres enables us to make contact with a unique database of customers, which has been a cornerstone of the success we have achieved to date.
Our on-going commitment to staff development and training ensures that we can deliver on our promise of "100% customer delight" at all times.
We ensure that everyone who speaks to a customer is not only trained in our products but is qualified through company-sponsored insurance education.
In a competitive sector and location, KFIS attracts the best people by focusing on what makes the working environment fantastic for those who work for us.
Our outstanding business performance is very much due to the contribution of our employees and our insurance partners who continue to work with us to ensure we are delivering the best products and rates to our customers.
We would like to extend our thanks to our employees, partners and suppliers for their contribution to our success.
We are delighted to have been highly commended at this year's Insurance Times Awards.
The highlight of Benfield's year was the completion of its IPO on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in June 2003. The IPO, which was the first float to be successfully completed in London for 12 months, was widely reported as being highly successful.
Completion of the IPO marked the next stage of Benfield's development, but in many ways it is the things that have remained constant that mark Benfield's greatest achievements. The values of integrity, teamwork and creativity are as core to the business now as they were at its foundation.
In all areas of the business, growth has been solid. Benfield's market share in Central and Eastern Europe continued to increase as customers benefited from the company's sophisticated modelling capabilities. The Pacific Rim area performed well and Benfield succeeded in getting its licence to open an office in Shanghai ahead of expected new reinsurance regulations in China. The US business also put in a solid performance in 2003, continuing to build on the platform established through the acquisition of US broker EW Blanch in 2001. Benfield also opened an office in Bermuda to expand its existing customer base and to consolidate existing relationships in the island's thriving reinsurance market.
We were highly commended for this award two years ago and we are very pleased that we have been highly commended again this year.
We are a broad church and as commercial lines specialists, have developed a number of market-leading schemes, being official brokers to several trade associations. We also write substantial business facultatively in the Lloyd's/company markets.
We believe in quality in everything we do. Quality in relationships, service, staffing, and most of all, in business practice. We must be innovative, build long-term relationships with clients, insurers and everybody else we are connected with; we are not complacent. Life moves on and we are moving with it. In fact, in some ways, we lead the market.
We have recently formed a new broker network to assist brokers nationwide in the placement of commercial business to help with training, compliance and registration with the FSA. "
We like to go the extra mile and as someone once said: "The difference between ordinary and extraordinary, is the word extra." That is the Camberford Law ethos.