UKGI chief executive outlines where Aviva is aiming to expand this year across both personal and commercial lines – although eTrading ‘remains a big area of focus’

Aviva has earmarked its retail and high net worth (HNW) divisions as two “key axis of growth and investment” for its personal lines business this year, according to Adam Winslow, the insurer’s chief executive of UK general insurance.

Speaking exclusively to Insurance Times, Winslow revealed that Aviva’s personal lines expansion in 2023 will centre around the “growth areas” of its retail operations – which includes Aviva’s “direct to consumer and price comparison website” businesses – as well as its HNW and private clients division.

The insurer’s HNW arm has been recently bolstered by the acquisition of Axa XL’s private client book in March 2021, as well as the purchase of MGA Azur Underwriting’s UK and Ireland HNW business in August 2022.

Targeted growth

In terms of growing Aviva’s retail business, Winslow explained that this will centre around the insurer’s Quotemehappy brand, which offers car and home insurance.

In particular, Quotemehappy will concentrate on the provision of “essentials” products to help cash-strapped customers access insurance amid the UK’s current cost of living crisis.

Winslow explained: “[These] products [are] focused on people who might be suffering through the cost of living challenge. We continue to want to provide a range of solutions [for] customers that respond to their needs - particularly when the macroeconomic conditions at the moment are difficult for lots of people.”

This includes Quotemehappy Connect, an app-based, telematics insurance product for younger drivers that launched in December 2022.

Quotemehappy Connect places Aviva firmly in the “young driver market” – a place Winslow admitted the insurer has not “really been in for a very long time”.

“That will be interesting to see how that goes for us,” he added.

In terms of HNW growth, Winslow is looking to repeat the success of Aviva’s Axa XL purchase with the more newly acquired Azur Underwriting.

He said: “We came through the first full year of the Axa XL acquisition, so that first full renewal cycle completed at the end of October [2022].

“We saw some really good results from that in terms of client retention and premium retention, which was above our business case plan. So really pleased [with that].

“Now, we’re about to do exactly the same thing with Azur where that 12-month [cycle] kicks off from the 1 March [2023]. The [Azur Underwriting] team have come across, but we don’t start writing their business on a 12-month renewal cycle until 1 March.”

‘Tonne’ of plans for 2023

Winslow is not drawing the line at just seeking to achieve personal lines growth, however. He also has ambitions to further expand Aviva’s commercial lines and eTrading successes in 2023.

Aviva ranked in first place for its eTrading service via both its extranet and through software house platforms in Insurance Times’ Five Star Rating Report: ETrading 2022, which was published in May 2022.

For 2023, Winslow plans to further boost the insurer’s eTrading offering by providing “more products”, “more capacity”, “more straight through processing” and a greater “ability for brokers to self-serve on our etrading platforms”.

“[ETrading] remains a big area of focus,” he added.

As for Aviva’s mid-market and SME business, Winslow noted that the insurer continues to “hire more resource in those regional underwriting and trading teams” in order to provide “access to empowered underwriters” for brokers.

Lastly, Winslow confirmed that Aviva’s global corporate and specialty business will also continue to make investments this year, “so expect us to talk more about renewables, appetite extensions and sustainability there as well”.

Winslow concluded: “We are a very big and very diversified business. We think there’s a tonne we can do, but [we have] some really good foundations to hopefully build [from].”