January 31 2015 Latest news:
Ben Woods, Business writer
Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Norwich-based Alan Boswell Group is eyeing record profits this year as it looks bolster its market share across the region.
The chartered insurer and financial planning specialist wants to capitalise on a decision by Towergate Insurance to downsize its east of England operation and move some of its business back to Manchester.
It comes as the Thorpe-based company revealed that it had edged closer to its pre-recession levels thanks to a 10pc growth in turnover – from £51m to £56m – and a rise in pre-tax profits to £2m.
Its revenue growth was partly fuelled by a fresh demand for its financial services thanks to the government’s launch of the pension auto-enrolment scheme.
Meanwhile,the business is confident that its organic growth will continue this year with the help of new revenue streams, including opportunities in the renewable energy market.
Alan Boswell, group chairman of the organisation, said the company has not only weathered the worst of the recession but has managed to grow because it has no debts to service.
In the past four years, the business has bolstered its workforce from 100 to 220, opened an office in London and bought two businesses in Peterborough.
“There’s a huge opportunity for us because we are now the only regional broker that covers from Suffolk all the way up into Lincolnshire,” he said.
“Next year will be our biggest year for turnover and best year for profits. We will get above our recession peak because our client base is on course to do a lot better than it is currently doing.
“And we are also looking to grow organically as well, and that is down to Towergate’s decision to move out of the region.”
Towergate Insurance operates five businesses across Norfolk and Suffolk, including Towergate Risk Solutions, Waveney Insurance Brokers, Smith & Pinching Insurance Brokers, Fentons and Morgan Law Insurance Brokers.
In April it announced that it would be cutting its branch network by 750 people, as a result of moving business to its Manchester call centre. It is understood that all its accounts staff that worked in the region have now been made redundant.Meanwhile, Mr Boswell said the rise of online insurance providers has not affected its business as much as he previously thought. “We can offer some of the services people want online,” he added. “But if you do not want to do that, you can still ring us up and speak to the same person that dealt with your premium the year before,” he said.
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