High Street Underwriting Agency is headquartered in Brendale, Brisbane and was founded in 2001. It is a Lloyd’s coverholder and is closely working with a London-based brokerage that has been placing international business into the Lloyd’s market for over a century.
High Street offers a wide variety of general insurance products, including accident & health, and corporate & leisure travel insurance, as well as hard-to-place risks. Its property insurance covers establishments such as hotels, cafes, pubs, and restaurants. It offers numerous liability covers, such as mining liability, construction liability, leisure liability, motorsports liability and professional indemnity. Insurance for tradesmen, such as electricians, painters, bricklayers, and locksmiths is also available.
According to High Street, it prides itself on the level of support and service it provides its brokers, with all its underwriters taking a hands-on approach, in order to avoid miscommunications or delays. Its mantra is “vanilla, extreme, and most things in between.”
In order to help brokers obtain quotes quickly and easily, High Street harnesses the power of technology to create a bespoke dashboard portal.
High Street Underwriting Agency in the news
2001: High Street Underwriting Agency was founded
2016: Former High Street Chief Underwriter Vikram Choudhry joins CRM Brokers
2017: High Street places second in Insurance Business’s Brokers on Underwriting Agencies survey (PI category)
2017: High Street wins second straight gold medal for product liability in Insurance Business’s Brokers on Underwriting Agencies survey
2018: High Street Underwriting Agency was named the best product liability and public liability underwriter for the fourth year running
2018: Nominated for Australian Underwriting Agency of the Year in Insurance Business Awards
Need to know
Type of company: Underwriting Agency
Service areas: General insurance (Liability, property, tradesmen, etc.)
Headquarters: Brendale, Brisbane, QLD
Employees: < 50
Key people as of 2019
Alan Whittle, managing director
Whittle founded High Street Underwriting Agency in 2001 and has been managing director ever since. Prior to that, he has served managerial roles in several underwriting agencies and brokerages in Australia. His approach to the agency is to embrace technology and to “bring brokerages into the technical age with us”.
Matt Almond, national underwriting manager
Almond is a former committee member of the National Insurance Brokers Association and a current committee member of Young Insurance Professionals. He has extensive experience in the insurance industry, having worked for various insurers, brokerages, and underwriting agencies. He was part of Insurance Business’s Hot List for 2019, described as “very hard-working” by his peers. He has participated in several mentoring programs to assist junior members of the industry.
Ben Allen, liability underwriter
Allen works with Lloyd’s syndicates and High Street’s Lloyd’s broker to develop and expand the company’s offering. Due to his in-depth understanding of policy wordings and excellent work, he was recognised with High Street’s Underwriter of the Year Award. According to Allen, he aspires to expand the agency’s scope into aviation risks and to work as an underwriter in the London market. In 2017, he was named by Insurance Business as one of its Young Guns – which lists the most notable insurance professionals under age 35.
High Street Underwriting Agency is highly involved with the Young Insurance Professionals Australia and New Zealand (YIPS), and is a frequent sponsor of its events, such as the organisation’s 2014 putt-putt golf night at the Victoria Park Golf Course in Heston. It also sponsors YIPS’ mixers and networking events.
In 2015, High Street managing director Alan Whittle, as well as several of its staff, participated in the Gold Coast Marathon, with Whittle and underwriter Anne Murrell finishing the half-marathon run.
High Street also supports Hummingbird House, a children’s hospice in Chermside. It seeks to provide care at the end of life for children with life-limiting conditions, as well as assisting their families.