5 Questions with Insurance Influencers: Scott Brown
When it comes to an MGA’s role in the insurance value chain, Scott emphasises that MGAs have expertise in niche business and access to distribution that Insurers currently don’t. Accelerate Underwriting have found using technology to be extremely effective as their e-trading platform, which was built with Insly, has made complex and time-consuming tasks simple. It allows them to automate a wide range of tasks, which helps keep the wage bill lower and, ultimately, provides a quicker response. Read further to find out Scott's opinion on the rest of our questions.
Is every MGA’s dream to become an Insurer themself?
In my opinion and experience, that’s not the long-term strategy for most MGAs as it goes against the reason why most MGAs were set up in the first place - that they can be nimbler than Insurers. Additionally, there’s a whole lot of new metrics and considerations that Insurers need to focus on, including capital requirements, etc.
What is the biggest challenge of running an MGA?
The biggest challenge is ensuring products are performing as expected, that is loss ratio targets are met and continue on the right track.
What is your view on why an MGA is a value-adding player in the insurance value chain, not just an unnecessary intermediary that adds to the final cost of insurance?
MGAs have access to distribution that maybe Insurers currently don’t. They can spot gaps in the market and design products to meet unique customer needs in this space. MGAs have expertise in niche business. For example, at Accelerate, we’ve worked with Insly to build an online offering for non-standard commercial combined customers, whilst continuing to provide next-level service levels that our Broker partners have come to expect, with easy access to underwriting decision-makers.
What is the greatest benefit that embracing technology has provided for your MGA?
We’ve invested heavily in our e-trading platform with Insly which has allowed us to keep headcount lower than for a typical MGA, as the system is doing the heavy lifting for us. This includes automating underwriting decisions, a robust accounts reconciliation process, and detailed and insightful data analytics. Using technology has proven effective in helping us meet our governance requirements.
Where would you suggest a person who wants to establish an MGA to start finding a capacity provider? What other challenges lie ahead on that journey?
If they don’t already have the market connections, I’d recommend reaching out to the MGAA who are able to help facilitate these early conversations.
Scott Brown is the Managing Director at Accelerate Underwriting. He has 25 years’ experience in the insurance industry, having worked for Brokers, Insurers, and MGAs. Before joining Accelerate, Scott was the Managing Director at Fusion Insurance and CEO at Towergate Insurance’s Commercial Underwriting Division. Scott is a proud father of three boys, likes to play golf and hit the gym in his spare time.