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The Hanover Releases its State of Specialty Insurance Report

February 15, 2022
Data highlights fragmentation risks, advantages of working with fewer carriers with broad expertise

WORCESTER, Mass., Feb. 15, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. (NYSE: THG) today released its "State of Specialty Insurance Report," which highlights the risks of fragmentation in the marketplace. The report spotlights the advantages agencies realize when they create strategic partnerships with select carriers that offer broad capabilities and deep expertise.

The Hanover, in conjunction with Zeldis Research, conducted a study of over 300 independent retail agents responsible for quoting and making placement decisions for commercial lines clients.  The report studied how their agencies approach specialty lines and the key factors they consider in the placement decision-making process. Notable trends uncovered through the research include:

  • Agents' knowledge spans the full breadth of commercial lines – Agents have broad expertise and possess the capabilities to meet the wide spectrum of their clients' needs, as the vast majority (96%) of agents sell or place both specialty lines and standard lines products.
  • Agents take a targeted approach to policy placements – Agents choose to place specialty business directly with carriers about half of the time, selecting to leverage wholesalers, MGAs or MGUs the balance of the time for market accessibility or expertise in a specific product, line or industry.
  • Agents strongly value carriers with a wide reach - Among agents who expressed a preference, 81% prefer national carriers to niche carriers due to the broader footprint and availability of coverages.                   

While these findings lend themselves to a framework for strategic carrier selections, a review of The Hanover's agency data reveals that carrier selection is often made tactically. As a result, agents end up working with multiple carriers depending on the specialty line they are placing, resulting in widespread fragmentation in an agency's portfolio. Notable findings include:

  • 50% of commercial accounts have only a single policy with an agency, but have many more insurance policies elsewhere.
  • When commercial accounts do have more than one policy with an agency, 24% are split across multiple markets, causing added work for agencies that are often left trying to coordinate placement and servicing across multiple carriers.
  • The typical mid-sized agency has at least 50 carrier relationships, and sometimes significantly more, yet more than 60% of an agency's premium is placed with its top five markets

"Agents have an invaluable opportunity to serve their clients by taking a cohesive approach to solving their needs,"  said Bryan J. Salvatore, president of specialty at The Hanover. "Today's client is looking for ease of doing business and streamlined service, both of which can be achieved by partnering with carriers that have comprehensive, carefully-designed product portfolios that respond to a wide variety of risks."

With this in mind, The Hanover is working with its agent partners to understand their needs and develop specialized solutions that align with their books of business, such as its new specialty general liability and enhanced excess and surplus offerings. Additionally, The Hanover's expert underwriters operate across lines of business to offer coverage in a thoughtful, coordinated way that makes it easy for agents to deliver cohesive coverage to their clients.

To see the full report please click here.

About The Hanover
The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. is the holding company for several property and casualty insurance companies, which together constitute one of the largest insurance businesses in the United States. The company provides exceptional insurance solutions through a select group of independent agents and brokers. Together with its agent partners, The Hanover offers standard and specialized insurance protection for small and mid-sized businesses, as well as for homes, automobiles, and other personal items. For more information, please visit hanover.com.


Emily P. Trevallion                            

Kyle Tildsley





All products are underwritten by The Hanover Insurance Company or one of its insurance company subsidiaries or affiliates ("The Hanover"). Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions and is subject to the company underwriting guidelines and the issued policy. This material is provided for informational purposes only and does not provide any coverage. For more information about The Hanover visit our website at  www.hanover.com. 

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SOURCE The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc.