February 26, 2016

AXA’s UK CEO Paul “Physical Education” Evans is annoyed. He’s annoyed that UK insurance firms keep blaming their lacklustre results on the weather.

Why can’t other firms be more AXA’s UK division, he wants to know. Why is it that PE and AXAUK are left to bear alone the mantle of ‘uniquely’ managing to keep their combined operating ratio percentile score estimate (CORPSE) so comfortably below the magic 100% (at 97.1% in 2015 to be precise) despite being battered by all the gusty onslaughts of Desmond, Frank and Eva?

PE is, not to put too fine a point on it, just a little bit sick of windiness being cited by less special insurers as an excuse for simply not being up to the exceptional standards of underwriting excellence exemplified by AXAUK.

And he’s not the only one. AXA CEO Armand de Blanc, is also dismissive of weather-based whinging.

Weather, de Blanc points out, is simply a fact of life here in what actress Emma Thompson presumably now regrets affectionately underplaying as a cloud-bolted, rainy, misery-laden, grey old island.

“We live in Britain so there is always weather,” de Blanc explains.

“The key point,” Evans summarises, is that “when you look at the results, ours are outstanding.”

So come on, all you other insurers, stop bleating on about this storm or that storm and do some proper underwriting, like AXA does.

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Weather will be affecting all parts of the UK again today


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