’Brokers ultimately decide who wins in the commercial space,’ says chief executive

Following on from an eventful 2023, RSA will focus on “integration and transformation” for 2024. 

That was according to the insurer’s chief executive Ken Norgrove, who told Insurance Times that the integration of NIG and FarmWeb would be the “biggest and most important element” of that transformation.

RSA agreed to purchase the brokered commercial lines operations of Direct Line Group – including the NIG and FarmWeb brands – back in September 2023, before completing an exit from the personal lines market by selling its UK operations to Admiral in December.

Norgrove explained: ”Last year was transformative in terms of making deals, but this year is really about executing on all of that.

”The intention is to bring the best of these businesses together, the strengths of NIG – higher frequency of trading with brokers and [working] closer to the regional broker market – and RSA, which has really strong capabilities around underwriting and pricing, to get the best out of both.

“DLG do the small independent market really well and RSA do the larger end of the market really well. We’re really looking to build the best of both without diluting one or turning down the other.” 

However, while the eventual aim is to merge the acquired brands into RSA, Norgrove explained that there would be continuity in branding and renewals for the first 12 months of the new arrangement.

Growth goals

With the new capabilities of the acquired brands and a new focus on the commercial lines space, Norgrove said that RSA would now aim to “outperform” the market. 

He explained: ”We’re not chasing number one status or being the biggest, but we want to outperform in three really core areas.

“We want four out of five brokers to recognise us for commercial lines underwriting and pricing excellence, we want three out of four employees to be advocates of the business and then we want to outperform the market by five basis points.”

Norgrove emphasised that “the most important” aspect of this was broker service, because “brokers ultimately decide who wins in the commercial space”. 

He added: ”If we’re mot delivering better than everybody else – substantially better than everybody else – then we don’t have a right to outperform.

”We think there’s an opportunity in this market to leapfrog and really outperform from a broker experience point of view – service levels were not good in the market last year, but we want to put brokers at the front and centre of our business model.

“We believe we could be the best general insurer by the end of 2025.”