Update on media speculation regarding the future of the insurance business

You may have seen some media speculation last week about the future of our insurance business, and this update provides some context on this.

Firstly it’s important to be clear that Insurance remains an important part of the future for the Co-op.

We’re currently at the very early stages of looking at future plans for the insurance business.

In the future our ambition is to be able to meet more of our members insurance needs; providing more members, with more products, at a more competitive price.

We have a number of challenges in doing this effectively with our current operating model, including our scale, current product range, and capital constraints.

As a result our ambition, could lead us to changing our operating model. For example we’ve started to focus on working with partners to launch new insurance products into new sectors, enabling us to offer more products to members who previously would have had to buy elsewhere. The new travel insurance product is a great example of this.

For the last couple of weeks we’ve been talking to a number of third parties about what our future operating model might look like. At this stage there are a wide range of possible outcomes. As referenced in the media articles, one of these potential outcomes might be that we eventually sell some of or all of the business.

We anticipate it will be much later in the year until we have any further update. In the meantime we’re continuing to work on new products, new innovation and providing the very best service to our customers and members.

Mark Summerfield