Double the number of Lloyd's insurers have agreed to modernise the London Market compared to the company market, finds the London Market Principles 2001 steering group.

Last year 350 brokers, syndicates and organisations were asked to support the London Market Principles (LMP2001) to streamline the claims payout process and make London a more attractive place to do business.

Brokers who controlled 78% of the market's premium income last year, including the “top five” – Marsh, Aon, Willis, Jardine Lloyd Thompson and Heath Lambert – have indicated their support.

Lloyd's, which accounts for 56% of the London Market business, has seen business worth 68% sign up. Last week ACE Global markets and ACE International, Lloyd's largest syndicates, worth £725 million, committed themselves.

In comparison, only 30% of the company market business, which accounts for the remaining 44%, has signed up. The decision to join will more often than not be made by overseas-based parent companies

The proposals need an overall “critical mass” support of about 65% to 75% by the end of March to be enforced.

Steering group joint chairman Stewart McCulloch said: “We are delighted with the response so far. These latest sign-up figures confirm we are well on course. We continue to talk to a large number of organisations and know that many more will be signing up shortly.”

Co-chairman Stephen Riley, said: “Support for the reform programme within the company market remains as strong as ever. We said it would take longer for International Underwriting Association (IUA) members to sign up, because of the need to consult their parent companies. We are confident that there will be more shortly.”

Paul Marks, project office manager for LMP2001, said: “The view is that we have already reached the critical mass of brokers, and nearly the critical mass of Lloyds. The company market is just taking slightly longer.”