Simon McGinn, regional trading director (North & Midlands), Allianz Cornhill
The DTI definition for SME encapsulates something like 98% of all UK businesses.
In Germany, small commercial means very small businesses, while the Netherlands tends to define its SMEs on the basis of the channel through which the business is brought to them. In the UK the sums insured basis is our core definition of SME.
The US also has a revenue basis for its definition, but what it has started to do is organise businesses around trade specific segments.
We don't see very much of predefined product bundles for specific customer groups and segments here. They're just not widely available. We haven't got our act together in coordinating insurers and brokers to determine segments and types of services and products.We need to get to the next level below that sort of high level segmentation.
Another major difference in the UK is the cost of production and distribution. Up to 45% of the price that we charge to the end customer is made up of expenses, not claims costs.
And most of that cost is the distribution cost. SME is a lazy label. We must be able to define our customers on a more sophisticated basis when it comes to our product design and services.