McCafferty re-affirms strategy as Brightside hit by £10.2m loss

Brendan McCafferty

Brightside saw pre-tax losses of £10.2m last year, but incoming CEO Brendan McCafferty said there is “no need to alter strategy”.

The Bristol broker saw its losses slip even further from the £6.8m loss it made in 2016. Revenue declined to £42.1m in 2017 from £48m the previous year.

The losses were due to a restructure of Brightside’s medical reporting business, where the company closed the Cardiff office and moved 25 staff to Bristol.

The move comprised part of the £6.2m reorganisation costs, which were down from 2016’s restructure costs of £6.5m.

In addition, the business invested £1.4m in set up costs for the managing general agent Kitsune, which is expected to launch in the latter half of 2018.

Former Axa UK CEO McCafferty, pictured, replaced Mark Cliff as CEO of Brightside in August last year. He said the move toward digital, as well as the launch of Brightside Bike in May and the upcoming launch of Kitsune, meant the company’s future prospects were good.

“I’m clear about how we need to operate, and while businesses like ours will always need to be adaptable, there is no need to alter our strategy,” he said.

The company’s own measure of its performance, adjusted Ebitda, improved from £3.8m to £5m.

The company’s long-anticipated MGA, Kitsune was incorporated in early 2017. According to Brightside’s filings, it will launch before the end of the year.

“Capacity has been secured with a reinsurer of good financial strength (A- rating) and is expected to start writing motor insurance policies in late 2018,” the filings said.

“The capacity provided to the MGA will improve stability and product reach for Brightside’s broking operations and offer incremental policy growth opportunities.”

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