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Telematics insurance gives boost to motor portfolio at IronRock

MONTHS after its launch of telematics insurance in the local industry, IronRock Insurance Limited said that the addition of the service has been positively contributing to its motor insurance portfolio.

The company, which recently launched its pay as you drive initiative (PAYD) telematics motor insurance product, said that the initiative has been driving brand awareness and increased interest in its motor insurance business.

“This has driven a 40 per cent increase in premiums generated by our direct motor insurance portfolio for the quarter and is a promising sign that the local insurance motor market is keen to see further innovation,” said Managing Director Evan Thwaites in the company’s second-quarter financial report.

Through the PAYD initiative launched earlier this year, IronRock insurance had said it would refund up to 25 per cent of annual premiums to customers as a reward for good driving. Through its partnership with technology support providers Guardsman Limited, the company will take into account all driving behaviour including sudden speeding, harsh braking, distancing etc — all of which are to be used in generating an overall score [based on the report provided by the installed tracking device].

Customers earning scores ranging from 80 per cent –100 per cent stand to benefit from a 10 per cent – 25 per cent refund of their annual premiums. Those scoring below 80 per cent will get no refund as per the telematics technology which uses GPS and motion sensors to monitor driving behaviour.

“This (PAYD telematics motor insurance product) has driven a 40 per cent increase in premiums generated by our direct motor insurance portfolio for the quarter …”

— R Evan Thwaites, managing director, IronRock Insurance

IronRock, in its push to offer greater online services amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, has since last year embarked on a robust development of its digital channels. During its last financial year the company upgraded its e-commerce portal and introduced a mobile app technology, initiatives which it said have augured well for the business and resulted in minimal impacts on its operations which, in its last financial year, also contributed to a 19 per cent increae in gross written premiums (GWP) of JM$837 million.

During its second-quarter period ended in June the company, however, reported that GWP fell by some 13 per cent, as against that of last year, to total JM$212 million. Net claims for the period was flat while operating expenses went down 6 per cent and net commissions increased by 48 per cent.

“The resulting underwriting loss of [JM]$20 million was a marginal improvement from last year. Other income grew 73 per cent due to increases in investment incomes and gains on investment sales which resulted in an improvement in our net loss to [JM]$7 million — down from [JM]$15 million for the same quarter in 2020,” Thwaites further said in his report on the company’s financial position.

IronRock Managing Director R Evan Thwaites
(File photo)

For its half-year or year-to-date out-turn as at June 30, 2021 the company said it had generated a consolidated net loss of $3 million which its principal cited as “a significant improvement on the net loss of $18 million for the same period in 2020”.