25 July 2016ILS

Hiscox premiums grow substantially despite tough markets

Specialist insurer Hiscox experienced significant growth along its various lines of business for the first half of 2016, period ending June 30.

Hiscox reported its gross premiums written (GPW) increasing by approximately 17 percent to £1.3 billion from £1.1 billion for the same period in 2015.

The Bermuda-based company attributed its growth to performances from its different lines of business, such as Hiscox Retail, which was the biggest contributor towards profit in the first half.

Hiscox USA delivered growth of 32.8 percent in local currency and Hiscox London Market grew by 9.7 percent in local currency, which the company claimed benefited from new business in niche areas.

Hiscox Re also performed strongly, attributing this to risk selections, new products and income from its ILS business.

Hiscox's pre-tax profit for this period increased by 52 percent to £206 million from £135.1 million, the figure from last year.

The profitability of Hiscox's underwriting has increased slightly, with a combined ratio of 80.7 percent, compared to 82.5 percent last year.

Bronek Masojada, chief executive officer at Hiscox, said: "Our retail businesses continue to grow in strength and profitability. Hiscox London Market and Hiscox Re have been disciplined in tough markets.

"Brexit has caused volatility and Sterling weakness, resulting in a foreign exchange gain which has benefited the bottom line. As this good result illustrates, our strategy, our people and our brand can deliver opportunities."