Premium Funding is a major privately-owned premium finance company in Australia, headquartered in Runaway Bay, QLD. Established in 1992 by Barry Hayward, it is one of the oldest companies of its kind in the market, and has provided premium finance services to thousands of businesses across the country.
What is premium finance?
Businesses face many financial obligations, including payment of premiums for various insurance policies, some of which are required by authorities for the business to continue running. Premiums, especially for policies that are sold annually, may pose a huge burden to a business’s finances. Premium financing companies pay for a business’s insurance premium in full, and the business will repay it in monthly instalments that are easier on the business’s finances.
Usually, the following insurance policies are offered with premium financing: general business insurance, public liability, workers’ compensation, and professional indemnity.
According to Premium Funding, an estimated one-third of commercial insurance premiums in Australia pass through premium finance companies. As a result, these companies hold a huge amount of data regarding businesses and insurance. To put this data to good use, Premium Funding came up with an industry whitepaper and broker survey to help share information and improve how the insurance industry can deliver its services to its clients.
Premium Funding in the news
1992: Premium Funding founded
2013: Premium Funding launches weekly payment option
2014: Premium Funding launches a new low rate corporate offering for brokers
2014: Director Ross Hayward calls for tougher sentences for white collar crimes
2015: Premium Funding releases first industry whitepaper
2015: Hayward helps establish 50-50 Foundation
2016: Premium Funding partners with St George Bank for broker product
2016: Automated premium funding contract process launched
2016: ‘Premium Funding Advance’ product launched
2018: Hayward named to Insurance Business Hot List
2018: Premium Funding helps develop the CPD Anytime app
2019: Hayward among judges for Insurance Business Australia Awards
Need to know
Type of company: Premium financing company
Service areas: Insurance premium funding, accountant fee funding, factoring, fee funding, PF debtor solutions, and PF advance
Headquarters: Runaway Bay, QLD
Key people as of 2019
Ross Hayward, director/owner
Hayward is among the most visible members of Premium Funding. Before joining the firm, he worked at Ernst & Young as an accountant. According to Hayward, he entered the family business to help his father Barry raise some debt to expand Premium Funding, but he ended up staying long-term. While leading Premium Funding, he has held different roles at other companies, such as director at eSentry Underwriting and director at Montserrat Hospitals. Hayward is a certified public accountant.
Peter Butler, general manager, sales
Butler has headed the sales function at Premium Funding since March 2019. He spent more than two decades at Combined Insurance, where he worked in the Australia, New Zealand, and US (California) markets. He also worked in the resorts and construction industries before joining Premium Funding.
Premium Funding is family-owned, and was founded by Barry Hayward and the late Rex Elkington. While Barry’s son Ross is very much involved in the running of the business, the elder Hayward remains very much involved. In 2016, the younger Hayward said that his father is “not going anywhere for a while.”
Premium Funding supports the 50-50 Foundation, which Ross Hayward helped found in 2012. The charity works with sporting clubs and stadiums to sell raffles during major sporting events, with 50% of the prize going to the ticketholder, while the remaining half of the jackpot goes to a charity chosen by the sports club.
The foundation works with several sporting organisations across Australia, including the Brisbane Broncos Rugby League Football Club, Sydney Roosters, North Queensland Cowboys, Power Community Limited, Brisbane Racing Club, Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks, and around 20 others.
According to the foundation’s website, it has raised almost $4 million in total funds since its inception. In 2019, it has hosted 120 games, while in 2018, it reached a record-high of 142 games. Tickets can be bought online and during the games, from roaming volunteers that carry handheld electronic devices. Each ticket transaction is electronically registered, allowing participants to monitor draws in real-time.