Avid to launch GAP and ancillaries division

Steve Duxbury has been appointed to head up the new division, which will launch in March

Avid Insurance Services is set to establish a new GAP and ancillaries division, which will be led by Steve Duxbury. The new division is expected to launch in March. 

Duxbury joins from Mapfre Assistance, where he was previously head of UK sales, and will be responsible for launching a suite of GAP products to brokers, the motor trade, online GAP retailers and leasing businesses.

He brings with him over 20 years’ experience in general insurance. Prior to his time at Mapfre, he held client and business development roles at Long Hawk (now part of UK General) and Direct Line Group.

Commenting on his new role, Duxbury said there is a “great opportunity” in an underserved sector after a period of instability that saw the failure of a number of foreign GAP insurers, as well as the withdrawal of capacity from the sector. 

Duxbury said: “It’s an exciting time again for the motor ancillaries market, on the back of growth in new and used car sales after the lockdown, and new financing products which are encouraging consumers to trade up to higher value vehicles.

“New compliance rules for GAP, including capped commissions, have helped professionalise the sales process. Aggregators are also now selling GAP, which has driven more demand for the product.”

He added: “The big difference now is that capacity providers want profitable sustainable business. At Avid we are aiming initially for a small number of good quality long term relationships, with first class data analytics and performance management to ensure we steer away from poor risk selection.

“We will apply the same rigour to GAP as general motor insurance in respect of risk profiling, risk selection, pricing, MI and analysis, via Avid’s experienced in-house team of underwriters and data analysts. Our strategy is completely different from the sales-at-any cost approach which caused so much disruption in the GAP market a few years ago.” 

Avid CEO Steve Gibson said: “It’s great news that Avid has attracted someone of Steve’s quality and experience. At Mapfre he built successful partnerships with Peugeot Citroen and other leading OEMS, as well as dealers and finance houses, so he is a very well-known and trusted figure in the motor GAP and ancillaries sector.  

“Avid’s success is built on our team of experienced underwriters’ deep market knowledge, use of data and a ruthless focus on profitable underwriting. I am confident that Steve will create a highly successful new GAP division to sit alongside our other specialisms in leisure, social housing, and travel.” 

He added: “Steve Duxbury’s appointment supports our ongoing strategy of growth and diversification of our product range. I remain keen to speak to experienced underwriters and/or teams looking to develop additional products within niche market segments.”

Avid’s entry into the ancillaries sector follows the launch into the equine, motor sport and leisure space in September last year when Mike Patchett joined the team.

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