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The power of partnership

Strong partnerships are the cornerstone of business success. And one firm ensuring robust collaboration is independently-operated insurance broker Lycetts. Here, Steven Hugill hears from regional director Neil McGuire about the company’s commercial insurance division, and how its co-operative qualities are helping clients lay foundations for great achievements.

People; process; product.

The route to business success, go the many commercial self-help compendiums, is found at the intersection of the so-called ‘three ps’.

Yet any firm truly driving for growth knows accomplishment comes not without a fourth directional marker: partnership.

Businesses advance when they work with a partner that understands its nuances; when they work with a partner that ignites innovation; when they work with a partner that transposes challenge into opportunity.

A partner like Newcastle-headquartered insurance broker Lycetts.

An ally to organisations for decades, its tailored commercial insurance services are a critical element of myriad operators’ blueprints across similarly multifarious sectors.

And they are delivered with company comprehension at the core.

“Our depth of knowledge sets us apart; we get to know clients’ respective worlds,” says Lycetts’ regional director Neil McGuire.

He says: “We understand them and their business, where they have been and where they are going.

“A crucial factor is the open and frank discussions we’re able to have.

“Understanding a business in the here and now is extremely important, but so too is getting to know its future plans and any changes and influences it believes are going to cause an impact.”

“Being nimble is important, but being prepared is essential,” says Neil, who leads Lycetts’ network of offices across the North of England.

He adds: “A client, for example, might want to expand into other territories, having exhausted the UK as a market, but it may not fully know what that entails.

“By really understanding a business, though, and then harnessing that knowledge with the strong relations we have across the insurance market, we’re able to properly align a programme to meet such a goal.

“We offer a comprehensive service; insurers are looking for well-managed risks, so we work with clients to make improvements in the areas that attract insurers’ eyes, across things like health and safety and continuity planning.

“Robust documentation helps sell the management of a business to an underwriter.”



Equally fundamental to Lycetts’ service delivery is the ease in which it traverses multiple sectors.

From family protection trusts and SME and renewable energy insurance, to guidance across areas including construction, education, property investment, play centres, hotels and zoos, Lycetts’ support is as varied as it is deep.

Crucial to such, says Neil, are the partnerships crafted between the company’s commercial insurance division and its sister rural insurance and financial services teams.

He says: “We aren’t a silo that stands alone; we are interacting all the time with our colleagues, and that makes a big difference to the strength of our delivery.

“For example, an existing rural client might be exploring a new venture that needs commercial insurance support.

“As they are going down that different route, it presents scope for us to look at things in fresh ways, and we are very good at finding solutions for something that might be out of the ordinary.

“It’s why we have such a range of clients and sectors, and a good number of niches, like leisure, wine merchants and family trusts.

“Renewables is another strong area; we began with Scottish hydro schemes, which we added to with wind, solar, biomass and biogas when the Government began handing out generous incentives for energy production, and we continue to build our presence in the industry today.”

Similarly impactful, says Neil, is Lycetts’ place within the Willis Network, an independent broker alliance that extends both its sectoral and geographic reach.

He says: “The Willis Network gives us global stretch and enables us to access some niche areas like aviation and oil and gas, by finding routes to experts in those places.

“Additionally, if a client expands internationally, the Willis Network means we don’t have to part company – it has offices around the world, so we can retain a relationship.”

Those global ties are supplemented by a solid domestic base, with Lycetts having last summer switched its UK headquarters from Newcastle’s Milburn House to the city’s new Bank House high-rise.

And Neil says its fresh surroundings, which peer down onto traffic snaking along Tyne Bridge, is adding momentum to its own ambitions.

He adds: “Our plan for this year and beyond is to grow.

“We have a good commercial book, but we’re ready to do a lot more, and our offices provide a fantastic environment in which to do so.

“They are a real statement of our intent to continue delivering services for clients, old and new, that help them achieve their goals.”

LinkedIn: @Lycetts

March 6, 2024

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