Hastings Group (“Hastings”), the technology driven UK insurance provider, today announces its interim results for the nine months ended 30 September 2021, delivering another period of profitable growth.
Toby van der Meer, Group CEO commented:
“I’m really pleased with the continued strong progress against our strategy, with our operational initiatives driving profitable growth in the first nine months of the year and customer numbers increasing to just over 3.1 million in a competitive market environment. We remain well positioned to take advantage of upcoming market changes and continue to invest in building our capabilities to become the UK’s best and biggest digital insurance provider. As always, my thanks go to the entire Hastings team for their hard work and commitment in supporting each other, our customers and the communities in which we work.”
- Strong financial performance, including increased profit before tax of £103 million (after tax £94m) and a calendar year loss ratio of 63.5%.*
- Premium reductions have been observed across the UK motor market during much of 2021, resulting from Covid, whiplash reforms and high competition, potentially in advance of the FCA’s pricing reforms which take effect on 1 January 2022.
- Hastings has maintained its disciplined pricing approach and has grown customer policies (+3% year on year to just over 3.1 million) in a competitive market environment through the delivery of a number of initiatives, including the rollout of new pricing models and the launch of new products.
- Underlying claims inflation continues to be observed and this, coupled with the FCA’s pricing reforms, is likely to put pressure for market prices to increase over the medium term.
- Customer retention rates continue to be high and above market average.
*Hastings Group Holdings Limited basis
Strategic and operational initiatives
Hastings continues to make good progress on its strategic initiatives:
- The rollout of new products and pricing approaches, supporting profitable policy growth.
- Improvements in customer service through systems enhancements and digital adoption, leading to continued high customer NPS scores and a 70% increase in mobile app log ins.
- A brand refresh, including the launch of new advertising campaigns.
- Claims process enhancements and technology investments, coupled with supplier changes (including a new windscreen supplier arrangement), resulting in high customer NPS and improved commercial outcomes.
- Growth in home insurance to over 300,000 policies (up 21% year on year) supported by new pricing capabilities.
- New home claims management capabilities launched in October 2021, providing customers with faster, better and lower cost support for buildings and contents claims.
- Well prepared for the implementation of the FCA’s general insurance pricing practices reforms, required by 1 January 2022, having fully satisfied the FCA’s 1 October 2021 requirements.
- The impact of whiplash reforms (effective Q2 2021) continue to be monitored closely.
Supporting our colleagues and communities
Hastings remains firmly committed to supporting its colleagues and the communities in which it operates. Highlights include:
- Continued high colleague engagement scores, with good progress on internal colleague development, as well as on the recruitment of diverse talent.
- Support for approximately 130 local charities, schools and community groups, including the planting of trees and hedgerows and the delivery of over 3,000 food parcels to those in need.
- Significant investment in flexible working, including new technology and laptops to enable colleagues to have a better digital experience at home or in the office.
- The launch of our Futuready education mentoring programme, designed to help year nine and ten students at local schools make better choices to improve their life-chances.
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Founded in 1996 in Bexhill-on-Sea on the Sussex coast, the Hastings Group is one of the leading general insurance providers to the UK market, with over 3.1 million live customer policies and employing approximately 3,300 colleagues.
Hastings provides simple and straightforward products and services to UK car, bike, van, and home insurance customers with around 90% of policies directly underwritten by Group's Gibraltar based Underwriting business, Advantage Insurance Company Limited.
Hastings Direct is a trading name of Hastings Insurance Services Limited, the Group's UK broker, which also trades via 'Hastings Premier', 'Hastings Essential', 'Hastings Direct YouDrive', 'People's Choice' and 'insurePink'.
The Group operates as an insurance provider with two separate businesses. The Group's Retail business, Hastings Insurance Services Limited, is responsible for the end customer pricing, fraud management, product design, distribution, and management of the underlying customer relationships. The Group's Underwriting business, Advantage Insurance Company Limited, engages in risk selection, underlying technical pricing, reserving and claims handling.
Retail is supported by, and benefits from, Underwriting's prudent approach to risk and reserving and benefits from a panel of insurance partners which provide additional underwriting capacity. The Group's business model deliberately separates underlying product manufacturing from its distribution.