Lloyd's broker Kevin Spencer is launching a new high-tech underwriting agency covering the Lloyd's and company market, offering brokers the chance to outsource chunks of their business.
And next month he will unveil a free internet broking business, called I4Insure, which he says will rival the likes of Insureright.
Spencer has bought the Hamilton Underwriting Agency from his current employer Edgar Hamilton, but will relaunch the business under the new name Lutine, named after the famous bell at Lloyd's, from July 1.
He has registered the Lutine company name, trademark and website addresses. Terry Wellard will be company chairman.
Lutine is already handling 250 quotes a day from 4,500 UK intermediaries. It has a premium income of £5m. But Spencer expects the business to grow. He says staff numbers will rise from 12 to 36, with many working in a dedicated call centre for brokers. The first lines of business will be motor and household but it will expand to fleet and small commercial insurance.
Lutine will quote for business from any intermediary and will underwrite business itself, access Lloyd's and go to all the UK trading insurers. "All except Highway," says Spencer, referring to the spat between Edgar Hamilton and Highway this year when Highway by-passed the broker.
"We will only be dealing with brokers. There will be no minimum premium income requirements. If the broker wants, we can deal with the customer through our call centre, but we will ring-fence the business and hand it back to the broker if or when he wants."
Spencer also plans to use the internet to keep costs down, with Lutine kitting out brokers with internet-ready PCs. "We have an internet application that we will put into brokers' offices. They can log on to our system all the time, download data and print out forms," he says.
Lutine will create an underwriting room where underwriters from its major insurers can be contacted direct.