Canadian Underwriter

Executive Outlook 2021: Nick Creatura, CNA Canada

December 18, 2020   by David Gambrill

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Nick Creatura, President, CEO, CNA Canada

As we know, the future rarely unfolds as we expect. Uncertainty drives our value proposition. Insurance responds when the unexpected happens.

In this period of uncommon uncertainty, it is incumbent upon all participants in the insurance value chain to raise their resilience quotient. Insureds, carriers, advisors, intermediaries and regulators all have vital roles to play in mitigating against the potential adverse consequences flowing from a number of macro factors and trends impacting the risk landscape.

The COVID pandemic is certainly among the most impactful of these factors. How long before we are through it? How effective will the vaccines prove to be? To what degree will the most severely impacted economic sectors recover? How will the lessons learned from an extended period of working remotely impact travel, commuting patterns, and the use of real estate? These are among many as-yet-to-be answered questions of the post-COVID world. There will be a return to normal, but over what period of time and exactly what the new normal will look like remain uncertain.

We are also contending with the uncertainty of increasingly erratic weather patterns, accelerating social inflation, and declining investment income from prolonged low interest rates. The above factors continue to drive a severe retrenchment of insurance capacity.

Another macro trend I would highlight is the accelerated pace of consolidation among distributors. The market is clearly evolving towards a model characterized by fewer, larger, national and global intermediaries, countered by highly specialized niche or geographically focused players. This is driving a realignment of relationships between carriers and intermediaries to optimize points of collaboration.

The familiar has been — and continues to be — disrupted during this period of uncommon uncertainty, which begs of all its participants greater focus, transparent communication, authentic collaboration, and resilience. Perhaps above all else, our greatest asset in navigating the journey forward will be the heightened sense of empathy that has emerged among all of us as we collectively fight the pandemic.

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