Insurer snaps up broking industry expert

by Miklos Bolza23 Mar 2017
Finance industry insurer LFI Group has announced the appointment of broking veteran Kevin Arkell as its national sales manager.

LFI Group is one of Australia’s newest insurers and was born out of Liberty Financial. The firm offers specialist credit insurance solutions in areas such as mortgage insurance protection.

Arkell worked as executive head of sales at La Trobe before spending seven years as state manager of Victoria and Tasmania overseeing Liberty’s senior sales team across motor, commercial and residential mortgage finance.

“I’m excited at the prospect of helping more brokers offer broader solutions that provide peace of mind to customers. There’s no question that brokers are a major force in the finance industry today and helping them better service their customers is what LFI is all about,” he said.

Since Arkell’s appointment around five weeks ago, LFI has brought in more than 500 authorised representatives which is a good start to the business, he told Australian Broker.

“LFI has a suite of easy to understand products that customers are really connecting with, and we also understand how important it is to make the proposition clear and the process simple. I’ve worked with brokers for many years, so I know how focused they are on getting the best possible outcomes for customers. LFI will help them achieve that.”

In his first steps in the role, Arkell travelled around Australia to strengthen many of the relationships he previously built up in the industry.

“It’s been really well received. It’s something different. It’s an opportunity where brokers are currently writing in excess of more than 50% of mortgages in the market but not so many are directly offering the customer the opportunity to protect that mortgage which for most people is one of the greatest financial commitments they’ll make.”

There will be more appointments to follow with LFI seeking a number of state-based sales managers across Australia, Arkell said.

“We recognise the importance of meeting the needs of our business partners, so we’re recruiting now to ensure brokers continue getting the best service from LFI.”

There is also an opportunity to broadcast LFI Group’s message more broadly, he said, indicating a wider goal of recruiting more people to work with the firm to help spread the message.

“With our already accredited brokers, we’ll get their training and understanding done. Obviously brokers need a Tier 2 in general advice here so we need to get that completed if they don’t have that already.”

The firm has also refreshed its brand and upgraded its website so brokers can direct customers to additional resources should they wish to learn more about LFI’s insurance products.

“By providing tools that help educate customers about our products and services, we’re making the role of the broker that little bit easier,” Arkell said.

“It’s such an exciting time because we are growing our business, our team and our online presence. Seeing customers benefit while our brokers grow their businesses is the ultimate win-win.”

Broker commissions for the product meet all regulatory requirements and are based on the annual premium that’s paid by the customer, he added.

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