New carrier takes over as crop insurance leader

ACE is no longer the country’s largest writer of multiple peril crop insurance, according to a report from SNL Financial.

Insurance News


Wells Fargo & Co.’s Rural Community Insurance Co. is now the largest writer of multiple peril crop insurance in the US. The company surged ahead 5 percentage points to overtake ACE Ltd. to claim the largest market share, an SNL Financial report revealed this week.

Wells Fargo reported direct premiums written in crop insurance of $2.34 billion, up from $1.72 billion in 2012. Its market share is now 20.03% as compared to 15.05% during the previous year.

Former leader ACE, meanwhile, maintained its share at 18.74% in 2012 moving slightly to 18.40% in 2013.

XL Group also moved up along the rankings to position 18, reporting direct premiums written of $51.9 million in 2013—a huge leap from 2012’s $4.9 million. XL Group is continuing to expand its presence in the crop insurance market, announcing the acquisition of Global Ag Insurance Services in February.

“Taking this next step of bringing on board the Global Ag team fully fits with XL’s strategy of adding high quality teams in attractive markets,” John Welch, president and CEO of XL Reinsurance America, said at the time. “We believe now is the time to accelerate growth by leveraging the strength of the XL platform and building upon the success of a regionally focused crop insurance model.”

Allianz SE’s Fireman’s Fund Insurance Co. fell out of contention in the top slots for crop insurance providers after ranking fifth in 2012. The company reported negative $211,184 of direct premiums written for crop insurance last year, due to a change in a reinsurance agreement with Wells Fargo’s Rural Community that lowered its quota share to 20% from 50%.

As a result, Fireman’s Fund ceased writing direct premium in the crop business.

Other top market players include QBE Insurance Group, American Financial Group and Endurance Specialty Holdings. Total direct written premiums in the multiperil crop insurance industry were $11.65 million in 2013, up from $11.39 in the year previous.

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