The creative account for Liberty Insurance is being put out to pitch. The incumbent, Rothco, has declined an invitation to re-pitch for the account, ending a four year relationship with the company that saw it pick up several awards, including two Gold ADFX Awards.
According to Rothco, “we are especially proud of the work we created during the key launch phase of the brand in Ireland and during the initial first two year ‘bedding in’ period. Since then market conditions and a succession of senior management changes at Liberty have meant that we have had little influence or impact on the direction of the brand. We therefore feel this is an appropriate juncture for us to bow out and allow a new client and agency relationship to start. We wish all concerned well”.
Since entering the market after the acquisition of the old Quinn Insurance business, the Boston-headquartered Liberty Mutual has experienced a torrid time and between 2011 and 2014, it racked up accumulated losses of €22m. Over the past 12 months, the company has significantly cut back its workforce from 1,580 at its peak to around 580 now while it has also exited the UK market as well as withdrawing from some business lines.
The Irish insurance market is extremely competitive and over the past five years, the strategy of many insurers was focused on gaining market share by undercutting each other. While price increases in the order of 25% for most motor policies have kicked in over the past 12 months, motor premiums are still a lot cheaper than they were 10 years ago. In addition, the cost of claims has been steadily increasing, heaping further pressure on the sector.