2015 was a memorable year. We expanded our underwriting presence with new offices, retained and added talent to our teams and developed or enhanced over 20 products, earning a top spot on Advisen’s Pacesetters Index. And both XL Catlin and several of our Insurance colleagues received market recognition.
We did all of this while executing a challenging integration to establish XL Catlin as a new force in the market.
What we delivered
Our global Insurance operations delivered solid results in a challenging environment.
Crucially, we held together the two legacy portfolios through the integration — losing less than 1% of our business in the process. That result, and the new business opportunities we saw, reflect the market’s positive perception of XL Catlin. And many of our core metrics further illustrate what we accomplished:
Our Gross Written Premium was $8.4 billion for the full year — a 40% increase over 2014, driven primarily by the combination with Catlin. When we look at what we would have produced had we operated as a combined organization for the full year and normalize for foreign exchange rates, our GWP was still up nearly 3% year-over-year. Being able to combine two organizations and modestly grow the business despite challenging market conditions and a potentially distracting integration is something we’re proud of.
Our Combined Ratio was 96.9% for the full year, versus 94.4% in 2014, reflecting the tough pricing market and a higher level of large losses year-over-year. However, the accident year loss ratio, excluding catastrophes, improved not only over 2014 but also sequentially in the second half of 2015, and that is perhaps the best indicator that we are well into fine-tuning XL Catlin's combined Insurance portfolio.
Throughout the year we faced a challenging market — which has continued into 2016. Pricing was negative across most lines of business. However, we intend to continue to leverage those lines that did see increases, most notably our cyber and environmental North America businesses.
Fit to succeed
In 2016, as our clients worldwide face new challenges and moderate economic growth, and as new opportunities and risks emerge with new technology, we expect more change in our industry. We’re ready for it.
We’re getting fit for the future by launching initiatives aimed at achieving greater profitability and boosting our efficiency. And despite market headwinds, we’re determined and focused on expanding our profit margin by improving our mix of business, leveraging analytics in underwriting actions, managing expenses and increasing our reinsurance efficiency.Put simply, we see tremendous opportunity. We’re determined to outrun the market headwinds and thrive.
Paul and Kelly
Chief Underwriting Officer, Insurance, and Chair of the Insurance Leadership Team
Chief Regional Officer, Insurance, and Deputy Chair of the Insurance Leadership Team