Established, well connected and specialist – these were recurring themes in a feature article and video which focused on the strengths, challenges and economy in Romford, specifically in regards to insurance broking.
The Insurance Age interviewed representatives from insurance brokers in the area, including C&M’s Sunil Shah, to see what the consensus was on the position of the local industry, both now and in the future.
“The majority of clients are seeing an increase in activity.” said Sunil, when asked about his opinion on the local economy.
C&M’s customers are predominantly within 30-mile radius of the office, which is an important factor in delivering a good service, as Sunil explains,
“We can add value because we can go and see the client,” he said. “I am a firm believer that there will always be a market for the personal touch and advice led approach.”
He, along with other interviewees, saw proximity to London as a plus point,
“We’re very close to London and transport links are very good”, said Sunil, “We find the insurers are flexible around here and there is no problem with getting meetings.”
Head of Marketing at AllClear Gary Nelson, agreed that the short distance to London helped nurture specialist brokers in the area, explaining that they are “close enough to the London Market to have a good understanding of insurance.”
C&M were shown to buck the trend of targeting specific businesses across the country, owing to their exponential growth in recent years to a more traditional broking service which exists primarily to serve the local community.
Sunil said that while brokers in the Romford area were in an excellent position being well-established, some were not taking full advantage of their inherent knowledge in specific areas,
“Many are trying to get away from what they traditionally did and enter into markets, like commercial markets, and maybe they lack experience and the expertise that they need.”
C&M has reached £2m of GWP since its establishment in 1996 and is growing an extra 20% a year.
“Affluent”, “vibrant” and “lots of investment” were phrases attributed to the Romford economy, which is set to get another boost from the Crossrail project.
“You are seeing an increase in house prices,” said Sunil. “It is exciting and the accessibility to London will be even greater.”
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