Britannia announces a further USD10m Capital Distribution and no General Increase for 2019/20

At its Members’ Representative Committee and Board Meetings on 16 October in Hamburg, Britannia P&I Club announced that for 2019/20 there would be no General Increase to its advance call for P&I Members. In addition, Britannia continues to set its release calls for open policy years at nil.

A further USD10m capital distribution was also announced to P&I mutual Members based on premium for ships on risk at midnight BST 16 October 2018.

Likewise, there will be no General Increase for 2019/20 to its advance call on FD&D. To further support its FD&D Members, from 2019/20 Britannia will cap at USD150,000 individual Members’ one-third contribution towards the cost of any FD&D claim.

“Britannia’s strong capital position means that, since October 2016, we have been able to return USD75m in deferred call waivers and capital distributions to Members, while seeking no General Increase in P&I for the past three years or FD&D for the past five years,” said Nigel Palmer OBE, Chairman of Britannia.

“In the same period, we have enhanced our service offering in Asia whilst establishing a presence in Greece and Denmark. This underlines the Club’s commitment to its Members by continuing to provide the highest quality service.”

“Standard & Poor’s have recently reconfirmed Britannia’s strong financial performance and positive capital position with an A (stable) rating. Prudent yet proactive financial management by the Managers has enabled both Members and the Association to benefit from positive returns” said Jo Rodgers, CFO of Tindall Riley (Britannia) Limited.

 

Britannia Announces Team for Greek Office Opening

Britannia has finalised its Greek office opening plans by announcing the team that has recently taken up residence in Piraeus, Greece.

The office will be tasked with enhancing service delivery to its Greek members and is part of an ongoing expansion of the Club’s regional hub network that will also shortly see the opening of an office in Singapore in addition to the upgrading of its presence in Japan and Hong Kong, as well as the recent opening of an exclusive Correspondent in Copenhagen.

The Greek office, located in the iconic Ionian Building off Akti Miaouli, will be headed by David Harley who recently returned to the London office having established and worked for over 5 years as head of Britannia, Hong Kong.

David has extensive P&I and FD&D claims handling experience and will be assisted by newly appointed Konstantinos Samaritis, who joins from a leading Greek shipowner, having previously worked for both Standard and Skuld Clubs’ Greek operations.

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S&P Global Ratings affirms Britannia’s ratings as ‘A’ (stable)

S&P Global Ratings, the world’s leading independent credit ratings provider, has affirmed its ‘A’ rating on the Britannia P&I Club. It added that the outlook remains stable over the next three years based on its view that the Club’s current capital buffer well exceeds S&P’s ‘AAA’ level requirement.

S&P based its findings on Britannia’s extremely strong level of capitalization and its strong market position in the P&I mutual business, where it has “a track record of quality in its underwriting” and added that the Club “enjoys strong returns”.

The report also notes that with a five-year average net combined ratio (2014-2018) of 88.9%, Britannia’s operating performance has exceeded its long term break-even target and the peer average during this period.

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Britannia Opens Exclusive Correspondent Office in Copenhagen

Britannia underlined its commitment to the important Danish P&I market by hosting a reception to mark the official opening and launch of its newly appointed Exclusive Correspondent based in Copenhagen, B Denmark P&I.

The reception was held at B Denmark P&I’s offices in the heart of Copenhagen’s shipping district, Hellerup. In attendance was John Ridgway and Andrew Cutler, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer respectively of Tindall Riley (Britannia) Limited, Managers of The Britannia P&I Club, along with B Denmark P&I Managing Director, Michael Boje-Larsen.

Mr Boje-Larsen is a lawyer with considerable experience in maritime law and has previously worked both for another IG Group P&I Club and in private practice. He has worked for over 20 years in the insurance sector and was seconded to open a competitors Greek office in the early 2000’s, adding a unique set of skills to the team.

Britannia opened the office in Copenhagen to enhance its service delivery and growth potential in Denmark which currently accounts for 16% of its business. The expansion into Denmark also reaffirms previous comments from the Club about having offices in strategic locations to ensure the Membership receives the best service possible in a timely manner.

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Tindall Riley Team Raise Money by Walking 56 Miles Along the Thames Path

A group of staff from Britannia’s managers, Tindall Riley, walked 56 miles of the Thames Footpath Route to raise money for the Marine Conservation Society with a mission to complete the walk within 24 hours.

13 staff set off from Cookham, Berkshire, at 6pm on 12th July and walked through the night, before being joined by 13 more colleagues at Hampton Court to finish the remaining 25 miles to London Bridge. Nearly all participants completed the challenge within the time limit, with one group of six doing the entire walk in under 20 hours.

The team raised £2,255 via its JustGiving page and with Tindall Riley pledging to match the amount, a total of £4,510 has been raised for this deserving charity which helps protect the planet’s seas, shores and wildlife.

“I would like to congratulate my fellow colleagues who took part in this challenge and raised a huge sum of money for such an admirable cause,” said Andrew Cutler, CEO Britannia.

“Cleaning up our oceans is vital work and is such an appropriate charity for our team to have chosen, particularly as the IMO is rightly focussing on regulations designed to minimise the maritime industry’s negative impact on our oceans,” he continued.

If you would like to find out more about the work that the Marine Conservation Society does, simply access the website: https://www.mcsuk.org/ and get involved as there are plenty of ways that volunteers can help.

Britannia P&I’s Preferred “Hard Brexit” Location Option

Following the 23 June 2016 referendum and the UK’s triggering of Article 50 on 29 March 2017, Britannia’s Board has been considering plans to preserve the ability of the Association to write non-UK EU business post Brexit (i.e. to preserve the current benefits of passporting).  Possible restrictions on the freedom of movement of staff between the UK and EU would not currently have a material impact on the Association, although this will be monitored.

It is hoped that discussions between the UK and the remaining EU states will allow for continued passporting or a transition arrangement.  In the meantime, Britannia’s plans assume a worst-case of a “hard Brexit” and the loss of passporting from 29 March 2019.

With the advice of third party consultants and having engaged with various EU regulators, Britannia’s Board has now instructed the Managers (Tindall Riley (Britannia) Limited) to focus on Luxembourg as the preferred option.  The structure envisaged is the maintenance of Britannia as a UK domiciled insurer and the creation of a new EU (Luxembourg) domiciled insurer.  Both insurers (Britannia UK and Britannia Europe) would be owned by a UK domiciled parent company.  This will preserve the nature of the Association as a single entity i.e. to maintain a common approach to risk appetite, underwriting, investment, reserving and operational procedures.

The Managers will engage further with the Association’s consultants and legal advisers together with the PRA (UK’s insurance regulator) and CAA (Luxembourg’s insurance regulator).  It is envisaged that a formal application to establish Britannia Europe will be made in early 2018 to enable the insurer to be licenced and operationally ready by the end of 2018 and in good time for the 20 February 2019 renewal.

At this stage it is not envisaged that a Part VII transfer will be required.