"Marching Forward" Broker Announces Growth and Profits at London Conference

10th November 2010

Hastings Direct updated the industry at its annual conference on the progress made since the business was bought last year by the management. The event held at the historic Inns of Court at Gray's Inn was attended by senior figures from the insurance and financial industry.

Neil Utley, chairman, Hastings Direct: "We are delighted with the progress we have made in transforming the business. We have a first class management team and market leading performance."

Edward Fitzmaurice, CEO, Hastings Direct, gave an update on the company's progress over the last year. Highlights included;

  1. The business doubled its customer base to 650k and premiums have increased to over £250m.
  2. The business returned to profit, £9.1m, after several years of losses and expects to make c£20m this year.
  3. The business is reaching the end of a £15m investment programme in infrastructure including new contact centres at Bexhill and Newmarket, a new telephone system, new web sites, control room, anti-fraud department, new customer database, intranet and a new broking system.
  4. The business has greatly expanded its sales of commercial vehicle, home and motor insurance products.
  5. Staff numbers have grown from c600 to 1,000.

Fitzmaurice: "We have invested very heavily in the business and our people to create a company that can deliver great customer service and grow profitable sales. We are passionate about our market and our company. Our recent success gives us the confidence that we will be one of the top five personal lines brokers in the UK by 2014 with a business that is capable of consistently growing both the top and bottom line".

"In some of the toughest economic conditions for decades, I am delighted to be able to present the turnaround of Hastings Direct. The staff has worked tremendously hard over the last 18 months and their efforts shine through in our increased customer numbers, retention rates and profitability."

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