With so many MGAs about, how do you choose the right one?

It’s no secret that the insurance market often thrives during times of uncertainty, but few could have predicted how popular Managing General Agents (MGAs) would become in recent years.

In a 2017 survey by Insurance Age, MGAs reported a 31.6% average increase in gross written premiums since 2014. And staff numbers increased by almost one-fifth during the same period.

So what’s behind the growth?

For large insurers with an eye on their bottom line, the case for MGAs is obvious – they provide a cost-effective route to market, giving them access and expertise in otherwise unreachable areas.

It’s similar for brokers. In the search for ways to market, MGAs provide essential channels of distribution.

But you’d be forgiven for mistaking most MGAs for wholesalers who sit in between brokers and insurers. There’s often little difference between an MGA and any other kind of middle-man with a sales-led approach. While this is a perfectly viable business operating philosophy, it is not one we have embraced.

We here at Corin are also an MGA. But we try to do things differently. With a background firmly rooted in underwriting, we focus on profit – not just volume. This means that we devote time and care to each and every risk we underwrite, ensuring that our insureds get the best possible service.

Since we prioritise underwriting value rather than volume, our portfolio of brokers is carefully selected. We prize long-term partnerships which yield stable, consistent growth over short-term profit, and by setting our own rates, we produce added value for our capacity providers.

We believe that underwriting is an art. It is a craft which demands technical skill and a thorough understanding of risk. We have the skills needed to underwrite each risk on merit, rather than on generalised estimations.

It doesn’t make for your average MGA – but it does make for excellent underwriting.