Hastings tipped to pick up R&SA's leads from direct arm

Royal & SunAlliance (R&SA) is accepting tenders on motor and home unconverted leads from More Th>n, in what is thought to be the first deal of its kind for the insurer.

The bidding process is thought to be down to the last two or three companies, with Hastings Direct tipped to pick up the book.

A market source said: "This is quite a change for R&SA. For the first time it seems to be out to squeeze all it can out of the business."

The source said the move was not something R&SA would have done three or four years ago."

The referrals from the More Th>n call centre are thought to be attracting bids of up to £5 per lead, a potential annual income stream for R&SA in the low millions.

The source said: "This is good news for R&SA shareholders as it allows the insurer to maximise its revenue. The company is adopting what others do as a matter of course."

Through tight underwriting criteria and stringent credit checks on callers More Th>n is thought to generate more failed quotes than the market average.

This could result in over a million failed quotes per year, and anything up to half that number being passed on to the winning tender.

Both Hastings Direct and R&SA declined to comment.