All Things Business met with Andy Bedford, now Managing Director for Towergate Insurance.
You’ve been in the insurance industry for 40 years, the majority of which has been in Leicestershire, so why Northamptonshire, and why now?
My colleague Peter Robinson, who has been Managing Director for Northamptonshire for the last 15 years, made the decision at the end of last year to step down from his Managing Director role. Peter continues to work in the business and is very much an integral part of not just Towergate Insurance, but as a former President of The Northamptonshire Chartered Insurance Institute and member of the Rotary Club, he is an integral part of the insurance and business community in the county. I have lived in Northampton all my life, but have been the Managing Director of Towergate Insurance East Midlands, based in Leicester since 2010, so when I was asked if I would be interested in coming over to Northamptonshire I jumped at the chance. It is a bigger branch, with larger clients and a great team. It is another exciting chapter to my career, which I am relishing.
Towergate is the biggest independent insurance broker nationally, but biggest is not always best. Why do you believe Towergate is the best insurance broker in Northamptonshire?
We are part of the Ardonagh group, www.ardonagh.com which comes with lots of benefits. This means we have scale and can influence insurers for the benefit of our clients. Locally and nationally, we have the expertise and experience to deal with any issues our clients throw at us.
From your experience, over the last 40 years what percentage of businesses do you believe have the correct insurance policy?
The FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) and insurance industry research shows that over 50% of buildings insurance policies are under-insured and that up to 43% of business interruption policies are under-insured, so it is really important that we highlight this. We aim to review our clients policies every quarter, rather than the annual review call. Business is moving and evolving all the time. Companies are growing, diversifying and investing, so it is important we are on hand to advise them accordingly.
You have over 70 staff, spread between your Northampton and Kettering office, with some notable recent appointments. What is the plan for the rest of 2019?
My plan is to be the automatic choice, as the insurance broker for all Northamptonshire businesses. We believe that we are the best community brokers in every part of the country that we operate. The majority of our staff in Northamptonshire have not only worked for us for a number of years, but they also live in the county so their knowledge is second to none. We believe in our people and will be growing our team throughout 2019.
Give our readers one piece of insurance advice for 2019…
Risk management. We don’t just concentrate on price, we gain an understanding of each client and make sure they have the right policies for them. We are risk management advisors, not just insurance brokers. By managing your risks you will enjoy lower insurance costs, and a happy and safe working environment.
If you would like to speak to Andy, or a member of his team call 01604 887300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about Towergate Insurance visit www.towergate.com/