The latest insurance stories online

Fortis’s confirmation of its anticipated rebrand sent visitors rushing to the Insurance Times website to check out its proposed new name, Ageas. Combined with its annual results, the story was the most popular on the site over the past week.

A casualty of the global financial crisis, Fortis will lose its identity in the UK market where profit before tax and interest fell to £29m from £76m. It becomes the second major insurer in the past year to announce such plans. AIG UK’s change to Chartis also dominated the online rankings when it was announced last December.

By coincidence, the latest developments at Chartis also caused a stir last week when it announced a senior management restructure. QBE Europe’s latest restructure also received plenty of hits.

Insurance news was prominent on other sites too. The latest on the FSA’s payment protection insurance (PPI) proposals made plenty of headlines, including on the BBC website. It reported the regulator’s plans to delay its decision on how to combat the mis-selling of PPI.

The government’s proposal that all dog owners in England and Wales insure against their pet attacking someone sent online visitors barking mad, with a number of witty headlines at home and abroad. My favourite? ‘Furious dog owners in UK fight microchips for “weapon” pets’ from the website of Fox News in the USA.

Excitement is building for the Insurance Times Hustings event on 29 March. You still have time to shape pre-election debate by submitting your all-important industry questions to the people who want your vote. Visit for more information.

Online Top 10

Fortis profits tumble as it rebrands to Ageas

Chartis appoints new UK boss in restructure

QBE Europe in major restructure

Towergate Underwriting in double launch

Insurers wont cover new build

Westinsure looking to the future

PowerPlace restructures regional team

Chaucer back in profit

All dogs to need insurance

Marsh hires northern boss for FINPRO