Specialist motor insurer, ERS, today announced a profit of £13.9 million – a record since it was bought by Aquiline in 2013. This result has been supported by a 13% year-on-year increase in vehicles on cover and GWP of £360 million (£330m in 2018).
However, ERS’s combined operating ratio (COR%) which ended the year at 99.7% was up from its COR% recorded in 2018 at 96.1%, which the company stated reflects the June 2019 change in the Ogden discount rate to -0.25%.
“Through 2020, we’ll continue to focus on our COR%,” said ERS CEO Ian Parker. “We have strong underlying performance and in investments we’ve made in infrastructure and technology, we have the foundation in place to achieve our goals and continue to build a track record of results. We fully expect to continue to drive stable, profitable premium growth.
“2019 was a difficult year for the industry with exceptional claims inflation and Ogden impacting results for the fourth year in a row. While Ogden was out of our control, we continued to refine our book and focus on the things we can control. We invested in electronic platforms where price and speed of service are key to successful trading and made huge leaps forward in our data and analytics capability, by building a new data science team to help us underwrite the right risks at the right price.”
The business will continue to make significant technology investments to build on its legacy-free IT applications and over half of ERS’s commercial new business is now traded online through eTrade. Data Enrichment enhancements will be utilised by the business to provide underwriters more confidence to pick the right risks at the right price and its insurer hosted pricing has been rolled out across more products to help provide more risk data.