May 8, 2009

Hastings Direct chairperson Neil Utley is excited. Why? Because he has identified an opportunity to build “the best multichannel insurance broker in the UK.”

How? By opening three ‚ possibly more ‚ high street shops. This revolutionary‚ or perhaps counter-revolutionary‚ new strategy, Utley says, will allow Hastings Direct customers to “deal with us face to face in our branches, on the phone, or over the internet. They make the choice” (choose?) “how they want to deal with us.”

If all goes well with the initial trio of high street shops, Hastings plans to open more. When? In the near future‚ some of them potentially on a franchise basis.

Elegantly linking faces, explosions and drama on the high street, Hastings Direct CEO Edward (possibly Ed) (probably not Eddy) Fitzmaurice, explains why the UK needs HD shops today:

“Since the advent of large centralised call centres over the last 20 years, and the explosion of the internet in the last 10, face to face insurance advice and brokerage on the high street has lessened dramatically. Added to this, the current financial climate has seen our high streets suffer with weekly closures.”

See also previous Hastings story here.

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