Kevin Mason, Executive Vice President
We’re seeing carriers and MGAs looking to technology as a way to differentiate themselves and move faster on program opportunities.
November 17, 2017
Instec, a market leader in the delivery of software solutions for commercial program insurance and specialty writers, continues to see strong growth in program business. As evidence, more than half of Instec customers are deploying new programs on the Instec Policy system to expand their footprint in chosen markets.
“We’re not really surprised by this trend,” said Kevin Mason, Executive Vice President at Instec. “We’ve been seeing more and more carriers turn to programs as a safe haven in a persistently soft P&C market.”
The latest TMPAA State of the Program Business Study found that program business premiums grew 5.3% in 2016, more than four times the overall market’s growth. The success of program business can be attributed in large part to the Managing General Agents’ (MGAs) intimate knowledge of the markets they serve. The MGA’s credibility builds stronger customer loyalty, and drives higher renewal rates – 85%, on average, according to the study.
“The attractiveness of program business is creating interest among carriers looking for growth, and this is driving greater competition among both carriers and MGAs,” said Mason. “We’re seeing carriers and MGAs looking to technology as a way to differentiate themselves and move faster on program opportunities.”
Many carriers that embarked on large-scale legacy replacement projects have found their systems are not agile enough to keep pace with emerging program opportunities, while many MGAs are bringing systems in house to gain direct ownership of their data, and control their destiny when MGA-carrier partnerships change.
“Carriers and MGAs are coming to us looking for a system they can deploy quickly. They all have an urgent need to launch new programs or migrate an existing book,” said Mason. “Instec’s content library delivers an ‘80% solution’ out of the box. Coupled with our cloud deployment, we’ve enabled new customers to begin quoting in as little as four weeks. Our software-as-a-service pricing is an important factor, too, because it lets our customers start small, and scale as their business grows.”
Among the customers expanding on the Instec Policy system, three examples illustrate the rapid scale-up the company has observed:
- An MGA acquired Instec Policy to manage a niche program for manufactured housing. When a major carrier selected the MGA to administer its entire small commercial insurance portfolio, the company migrated the entire book to Instec Policy, a 25-fold increase in premium running through the system, with support for seven lines of business in all 50 states.
- An MGA serving affinity groups with tailored programs, delivered through custom-branded websites, selected Instec Policy for its ability to cut launch times from months to weeks. The company has launched an average of one new program a month, the latest serving a national association with over five million members.
- A Chicago-based insuretech selected Instec to support a new coastal homeowners product. This MGA sells policies direct online, with Instec Policy as a “black box” rate-issue solution on the back end. The company has since added three new programs with more planned for 2018.
Across Instec’s client base, there are over 225 different program types running on the company’s systems. Instec forecasts that by the end of 2017, over $3 billion in managed program premiums will be running through their system, up 50% from last year.
“We’re optimistic about the continuing growth prospects for program business,” said Mason. “Programs support the trend toward a more personalized customer experience. We expect we’ll hear from more program writers who need an easily-customized and rapidly deployed system.”
Instec’s unique approach to systems for the insurance industry enables P&C carriers, MGAs and MGUs to launch program and specialty offerings from cold start to first quote in as little as four weeks with near-zero technology risk. Instec's built-in bureau content and reusable code – a library of over 30,000 forms and 300,000 rates and rules – empowers carriers to get to market quickly and efficiently. Instec's cloud-based deployment and subscription-based pricing model also enables carriers to test new programs at a low cost of entry and scale up quickly and affordably as the business grows. To learn more, visit http://www.instec-corp.com.
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