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Novae bloodstock team establish MGA with Castel

July 11, 2017

Novae’s bloodstock team have exited the Lloyd’s carrier to establish an MGA with Castel.

The new MGA, which will be run through the Castel Underwriting Agencies platform by David Higgins and Tara Woodward, will be backed by Novae which will provide full capacity for the start-up as it looks to retain its participation in the equine insurance market.

Novae said that the move had been mutually agreed and was subject to approval by Lloyd's.

The carrier explained that it had chosen to transition towards an MGA model due to the relatively small size of its bloodstock book with annual gross written premiums in the region of £5mn.

It added that the team tended to write following lines and that the market is a "less mainstream" line of business for the company.

Whilst at Novae, Higgins and Woodward wrote policies covering equine mortality, equine infertility, stallion loss of income, prospective foal and life-saving surgery costs for thoroughbred risks such as racehorses, stallions at stud, broodmares and young stock, as well as high value showjumpers, dressage and eventing horses.

"This marks a further strengthening of the relationship between Novae and Castel, which has grown in recent years with Novae providing capacity support to Castel on a number of other lines of business,” Novae said.

The move follows the announcement of Axis’ £468mn acquisition of Novae last week.

In May, Novae said it had withdrawn from financial institutions, professional indemnity, general liability reinsurance and motor reinsurance, citing inadequate future profitability prospects.

Later that month, Sompo International agreed to acquire the renewal rights to Novae Syndicate 2007’s financial institutions portfolio.