Allianz cuts key lines from NZ commercial market

Allianz has axed three major commercial insurance lines from its New Zealand operations after a strategic review. The insurer will exit property, commercial motor & fleet, and public & product liability – all currently underwritten and distributed by the Allianz Broker & Agency division. New business will not be accepted after May 31, while renewals will be offered until July 12. Allianz says it is not leaving the New Zealand market altogether, with the affected broker and agency business outweighed by “a range of commercial and corporate insurance products” remaining. Allianz Broker & Agency has a small market share – believed to be less than 1% and worth about $NZ40 million ($37.85 million) in premium. Divisions that will continue to operate in New Zealand are Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty, Euler Hermes, Allianz Partners, Club Marine, Hunter Premium Funding, Allianz Marine & Transit, and Primacy. “After much consideration, and following a review of the strategic opportunities available to our business in New Zealand, the decision has been made for Allianz to exit the three lines of business,” a spokesman said. “We will continue to support our customers through our underwriting and claims teams based in New Zealand.” However, Insurance Brokers Association of New Zealand CEO Gary Young told today that any loss of capacity is a concern, particularly against the backdrop of insurers’ falling appetite for risk in some parts of the country. “[Allianz] may not be a big player in the New Zealand market, but loss of capacity is not a good thing, given the small number of players here,” he said. Insurance Council of New Zealand CEO Tim Grafton said the withdrawal is “disappointing”. “$NZ40 million out of a market of $NZ6.5 billion is relatively small, but we don’t want to see any insurer reducing cover in New Zealand. Allianz is a good strong company and we like to have such companies operating in New Zealand." 

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