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Axa takes the honours for protection

Axa was the star of this year’s Lifesearch protection awards, winning in six categories including best overall provider.

The company, which is testing a guaranteed life insurance product with Lifesearch, also won most improved provider, best new initiative and best underwriting team aswell as the award for treating customers fairly. Axa protection account manager Naomi Greatorex took the award for best individual impact.

Legal & General was voted as best service provider and best e-commerce provider prizes after blitzing the 2007 event with six awards.

The awards have been running for five years and winners are selected by Lifesearch advisers. Speaking at the event, Lifesearch managing director Tom Baigrie said: “The awards are voted for on a one person one vote basis among Lifesearch staff so it is the people who deal with the life offices day in, day out, who ultimately decide the result and not a panel of judges, which means it is a true reflection of Lifesearch’s experiences with the providers.”

He praised Norwich Union and Axa for launching protection advertising campaigns in 2007, something Lifesearch has been calling for to raise consumer awareness, but attacked other product providers for not following suit.

Baigrie predicted that specialist protection advisers would see rapid growth this year and smaller players would begin doing business in partnerships rather than soldier-ing on alone.

He also forecast that thisyear would finally see paper applications replaced by online submissions, which would see a significant decrease in non-disclosure.

Lifesearch’s new business rose by 33 per cent last year.

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