Issue 47: QR Code 

Welcome to issue 47 of Credit Insurance News Digest, 20 November 2014.
This issue is kindly sponsored by AIG.

Credit Insurance News and Reports
QBE launches a single global portal supporting policy management. QBE European Operations has announced that it has developed and launched a single global portal that is shared by QBE Trade Credit underwriters across Europe, North America, Asia Pacific and Australia. The platform allows clients to: access real time limit decisions delivered by email (with an improved level of automatic limit approval), access QCheck - a new opinions product (see below), submit online claims and overdues service and obtain free status reports on UK and Republic of Ireland companies when clients obtain a credit limit or QCheck opinion. A comprehensive range of policies is also available the global portal. Click here for more information .

Coface UK expands its online offer with new products Policy Master and Cash Master. Coface advises that both Policy Master and Cash Master aim to simplify clients' daily management of their credit insurance cover, and make this more reliable. CofaNet Policy Master provides the client with a real vision of its exposure to buyer related risks - evaluating the actual outstanding amount per buyer from accounting data and comparing it to the amount granted by Coface. Appropriate actions are then suggested to the client, such as preparation of the turnover declaration and alerts to notify the client of when any set credit limits are exceeded or to inform the client of approaching deadlines for the declaration of overdue accounts. Cofanet Cash Master generates a secured certificate of cover to enable the client’s financial partners receive accurate information on the quality of buyers and the breakdown of covered invoices. To view Coface's news release go to

Credit Insurance in South Africa is in a growth phase. Following a recent trip to South Africa, Trevor Price, MD of CBF, advises that the credit insurance market in South Africa is quite different to the UK or Europe, in so far as only one of the global credit insurance underwriters – Coface – currently trades there. The largest market share, 70%, is held by Credit Guarantee Insurance Company, while Lombard boasts 18%, and Coface comes in third with 10%. In fourth place is a relatively new entrant, CIS, with 2%. The written premiums are around 1.3 billion Rand – which approximates to £72 million at current exchange rates. However, the country is entering an economic downturn, and Mr Price reports that credit insurance is now of significant interest and the market is in a growth phase. To view CBF's article go to

Political risk insurance claims are at their highest point for five years. GTR has published an article, 'Political risk insurance: Making headlines' which advises that the sharp rise in country risk across a cluster of emerging markets this year is engaging minds in the political risk insurance community in ways not seen since 2007/08. “In my opinion, there is some quite major risk out there, led by Russia and Ukraine,” warns Jerome Swinscoe, head underwriter, UK, with HCC Credit Group. “The drivers of the global economy have quite clearly changed over the past few years. Trade between Europe, China and the US has changed, with the latter benefiting from an increase in the domestic production of hydrocarbons. Europe is facing recession again and China is slowing at a pace that may not be sustainable.” As a result, the volume of claims incurred by the market during 2014 is “now shaping up towards a larger number than in any of the previous five years", according to Charles Berry, chairman of BPL Global. To view the article go to (A subscription to GTR may be required).

Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and Bridge Insurance Brokers launch a credit insurance solution for North West businesses. Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce has advised that it has joined forces with Bridge Insurance Brokers Limited to launch a credit insurance solution for North West businesses looking to begin exporting or grow existing overseas business. Supported by Euler Hermes, ExportSure from Bridge offers free credit opinions on top export prospects or customers and the discretion to offer up to £10,000 open credit to customers in a range of countries. Other benefits include a free consultation, a fixed annual cost, local collection support, Marine Cargo insurance for stock which is lost or damaged in transit and low premiums for smaller and growing exporters. To view the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce's news release go to

Thirty years in trade credit insurance: not only positive developments. ICISA has published the latest issue of The ICISA Insider which contains an article in which Philippe Van Weyenberg, Product Development Officer at Credimundi, looks back at his 30 year career in the credit insurance industry. Mr Van Weyenberg advises that he feels that clients had a more varied offer in the past when there were more industry players. He also reports the he has read that new ICT-tools "allow underwriters to take on three times as much work as in the past", and cautions that the industry's increasing automation and quick debtor risk underwriting can lead to the importance of the specific relationship clients sometimes have with their debtors being overlooked. This also constrains the attractiveness of credit insurance solutions, "at the moment when clients become more demanding than ever for tailor made solutions”. To view the fullICISA Insider article go to

The failure of OW Bunker will make credit insurance a lot more compelling. Ship & Bunker has published an article, 'Inside Opinion: Could the OW Bunker Collapse Cause a Domino Effect in Singapore?' which reports that the recent failure of OW Bunker has left suppliers and traders owed hundreds of millions "Those that have credit insurance are protected, others not and so are out arresting vessels and frenziedly trying to claw back some of the losses. These losses are likely, in most people's view, to drive one or two more suppliers or traders into bankruptcy." As a result, "Credit insurance will be a lot more expensive come renewal time and a lot more compelling than it was for those that don't have it now." To view the full article go to

Euler Hermes reports a 2% increase in US late payment amounts. Euler Hermes has announced that there has been no year-to-date improvement in the number of past due payments to US businesses and, at the same time, the average dollar amount of past due payments has increased about 2% during the first three quarters of 2014 compared to the same period in 2013. Euler Hermes therefore projects that Q3 2014’s healthy 3.5% GDP growth is likely to slow to about 3% in Q4 due to the strong correlation between payment behavior and GDP activity. “While the dollar amount of past due payments has improved by 60% since 2008, the current figures suggest that we can expect to see slower GDP growth for the balance of the year,” said Dan North, lead economist for Euler Hermes North America. “We have found a strong correlation between payment behaviour and GDP, including an increase in past due payments in 2007 as the recession approached and a decrease before the recovery began in 2009.” To view Euler Hermes' news release go to

QBE launches a new credit opinions service. QBE has announced the launch in Europe of a new and exclusive credit opinions service, QCheck, for its Trade Credit clients. QBE advises that the news service will enable its clients to assess the creditworthiness of UK and Ireland buyers and will serve as justification for clients within their Discretionary Limit. Clients receive a free allocation of QCheck credit opinions within their policy management charge. Typically, QCheck opinions are provided instantaneously by email, and through QBE’s online policy management system. Click here For more information.

Euler Hermes: Chinese exports up by US$300 billion over 2014/2015. Euler Hermes has advised that Chinese exports will grow by an additional US$300 billion over 2014-15 on the back of higher quality of products, new markets and better access to financing. As a result, by the end of 2015, Euler Hermes forecasts that Chinese businesses will export more than US$2.5 trillion worth of goods, maintaining the country’s position as the world’s export leader. Mahamoud Islam, economist for Asia at Euler Hermes, commented: "While textile and machinery sectors will remain key industries for exports growth, China is proactively increasing its role as a global trade hub for electronic and IT components . . . Nearly one-third of export growth will come from the electronics sector”. To view Euler Hermes' news release go to

Coface examines if the rising trend of Polish company insolvencies is slowing. Coface has published its latest Panorama report on Poland which, it advises, is a headline example of the country that didn’t record recession in recent years. However all is not positive, and Coface also reports that Polish companies insolvencies have been rising since 2008 - reaching their highest level for nine years in 2013. For 2014, despite an improvement during the first half of 2014 (in which 11.5% less companies declared bankruptcy compared to the same period in 2013), Coface cautions that a detailed look into the sectors now shows a mixed picture, with a highly competitive retail sector and the construction business - a long term negative performer - finally showing good results, but external turbulence and weak domestic consumption expected to fuel a higher risk of company insolvencies. To view Coface's news release go to

Atradius advises that after two years of recession the Dutch economy has started to rebound. Atradius' latest Country Report on The Netherlands forecasts an economic rebound in 2014 and 2015, although the outlook is still uncertain. According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS), the economy grew 1.1 % year-on-year in Q2 of 2014, driven mainly by exports, while IHS Global Insight predicts that the Dutch economy will grow by 0.7 % this year. However, in 2015 a stronger rebound of 1.4 % is expected, with export growth accompanied by a recovery in private consumption, industrial production and investment. However, Atradius cautions that since economic growth is still highly dependent on exports, geopolitical tensions - such as the crisis in the Ukraine - and the still shaky Eurozone rebound mean that the outlook for the Netherlands remains uncertain. To view Atradius' report go to

Despite improvements, Euler Hermes advises that the Moroccan business environment remains tumultuous. Euler Hermes has analysed Moroccan economic trends and has found that three years after the Arab Spring, although North Africa has yet to make a full economic recovery, Morocco continues to fare reasonably well with 3% growth forecast for this year, 4.2% growth in 2015 and an increase in exports of MAD 8.4 billion to reach MAD 240 billion. However, Tawfik Benzakour, general manager of Euler Hermes in Morocco cautions that the Moroccan business environment remains tumultuous, and warns that a 10% increase in company insolvencies is expected in both 2014 and 2015. To view Euler Hermes' news release go to

Atradius predicts persistent low inflation. Atradius has published a new report, 'Deflationary risk in the Eurozone', which advises that the Eurozone recovery is gaining traction, but the economic outlook is still dogged by serious concerns. One such worry is inflation, which remains well below the European Central Bank’s (ECB) 2% target and has been falling with a looming risk of deflation. However, the ECB’s latest policy stances have renewed confidence that the Eurozone may be able to avoid deflation and continue to grow, and, as a result, Atradius predicts that the most likely scenario is now one of persistent low inflation. This still has negative side-effects for the Eurozone recovery, and also leaves the monetary union particularly vulnerable to a downward shock. To view Atradius' report go to

Euler Hermes predicts that global insolvencies will only decline by 3% in 2014, keeping the loss rate 20% higher than its pre-crisis level. Euler Hermes has advised that for the fourth consecutive year, global GDP growth will be less than 3% (2.5% in 2014 and 2.9% in 2015) in light of the numerous risks that continue to weigh on company balance sheets. Noteworthy trends include the stabilisation in demand in emerging markets, the very slow recovery in Europe, liquidity and currency risks and the resurgence of geopolitical risks. “2014 was a complicated year and 2015 will be slightly better, but companies will not enjoy smooth sailing. Invoice settlement times will remain at high levels – 73 days on average – and the number of insolvencies is only expected to decline by 3%, keeping the loss rate 20% higher than its pre-crisis level,” notes Ludovic Subran, chief economist at Euler Hermes. To view Euler Hermes' news release go to

Integro launches a new credit insurance solution. Insurance brokerage and risk management firm Integro has announced that it has partnered with One Source Risk Management to offer credit and political risk insurance; international credit reports; collections; receivables management services; and factoring in the US and Canada. “Our clients need options to protect all their interests, and that includes accounts receivable portfolios, which for many represent a significant asset,” said Marc Kunney, president of Integro North America. “Credit insurance is a valuable financial tool which can enhance sales growth, improve borrowing terms and provide receivables management options." To view Integro's news release go to

And Finally . . . 
Credit Insurance News is delighted to announce that we have added a new photo gallery page  to our website. Thank you so much to our sponsors for their photos from the recent Trade Credit Dinner in London. Special thanks and congratulations must also go to to CBF's Matt Green who recently undertook a daring skydive over the Cambridgeshire countryside to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The amazing video of his descent back to earth is absolutely thrilling!

Click here to view this issue's gallery.

We would love to receive your individual and team photos, formal or informal, for display - especially in the festive run-up to Christmas. Please send photos to

Industry Events, Offers and Training
Insuring Export Credit & Political Risk Africa. 3-4 December 2014. Cape Town, South Africa.
Africa is fast becoming one of the most significant global regions for trade and investment. However along with this growth in trade, there remains significant political risk and instability. Building upon 25 years of the highly acclaimed London global convention, Insuring Export Credit & Political Risk Africa will explore high-level themes around the political and economic risk environment in Sub-Saharan Africa, focusing on cross-border trade and infrastructure development across the continent and giving context to the broader conditions for investment in this burgeoning but volatile region. 10% Discount available with VIP Code FKW52844CRN – Register here.

The future of the UK insurance sector - growth, competitiveness and regulation. Thursday, 22nd January 2015. Central London.
Attendees at this conference will consider the future of the UK's insurance industry, and key challenges ahead for developing growth, stability and competitiveness across the sector. The discussion is timed to consider next steps for implementing Government's UK insurance growth action plan - which sets out wide-ranging proposals to develop the sector's contribution to the UK economy - and will also bring out latest thinking on the industry’s regulatory framework in light of forthcoming developments, particularly preparation for the implementation of Solvency II. Guests of Honour include Paul Fisher, Acting Executive Director of Insurance, Prudential Regulation Authority and Frank Carson, Head of Insurance and Savings, HM Treasury. Click here for more information, and to book your place use the following link.

6th Annual West Africa Trade & Export Finance Conference, 4 - 5 February. Lagos, Nigeria.
This two-day event will bring together delegates from corporate, banking and financial services organisations to discuss key market issues within agribusiness, hard commodities, risk mitigation and infrastructural development. Specialist speakers will engage with high level delegates through specific transaction case studies, roundtable discussions, onstage interviews, and live question and answer sessions. A 15% discount is available for Credit Insurance News Digest readers, please quote CIN15. Click here for more information.

11th Annual India Trade & Export Finance Conference, 12 February. Mumbai, India.
Now in its 11th year and recognised as the conference of choice for the region’s trade finance community, the conference looks set to welcome over 250 high-level business leaders keen to discuss the most relevant issues affecting both domestic and international players. The conference format will allow for open discussion between delegates and speakers, panel debates, in depth case studies, live interviews and ample networking opportunities throughout. A 15% discount is available for Credit Insurance News Digest readers, please quote CIN15. Click here for more information.

8th Annual Russia & CIS Trade & Export Finance Conference, 17 February. Moscow, Russia.
As one of GTR’s most rapidly growing conferences, the event is now established as the largest of its kind and the only place to meet with the region’s primary business leaders and trade finance specialists. With recent sanctions raising many questions over future trade and exports flowing in and out of Russia, this will be the prime opportunity to obtain an up to date assessment of the current climate, while building key connections with those high level decision makers currently operating in the region. A 15% discount is available for Credit Insurance News Digest readers, please quote CIN15. Click here for more information.

Understanding International Credit Reports: New training course. Various dates throughout 2014.
Graydon has announced that it is introducing a new training course, Understanding International Credit Reports. The one-day course will examine: report content by region (MENA, North America, Latin America, Africa, Europe, Far East & 'Tax Havens'), sources of data (Credit Agencies, Public Registries, Local Agent in undeveloped markets & Law Firms), credit scoring/ratings and pricing. The course costs £599 + VAT (a 10% discount is offered to Credit Insurance News Digest readers) and will be held on various dates throughout the year. For more information, please go to

STECIS - The Trade Credit Insurance and Surety Academy has announced the dates for its training seminars in 2015.
The STECIS training seminars are two-day events and are highly interactive. They cover technical and practical knowledge on respectively Trade Credit Insurance and Surety Bonds, the theory of underwriting, in-depth analysis of industry developments, the terminology and the current market. In addition, participants are asked to review case studies. The BASIC training seminars are on 23 and 24 April 2015 and are open to participants with up to 3 years of work experience. The ADVANCED training seminars are set for 9 and 10 July 2015 and are suited to participants who have attended the basic training seminars and/or have at least 4 years of work experience. All training seminars will take place in The Hague, The Netherlands.
As the International Credit Insurance & Surety Association (ICISA) strongly endorses the STECIS training seminar programme, ICISA member companies receive a 5% discount on the total seminar fee. Companies (ICISA members and non-ICISA members) registering three or more participants to one training seminar, receive a 10% discount on the total seminar fee. For more information, please contact STECIS by sending an e-mail to or call+31 20 528 5170.

Business Information: Latest Reports and Business Shorts
Mid-sized businesses account for nearly £1 in every £4 of goods exported from the UK. New research from BDO shows that the UK's mid-sized businesses are an exporting powerhouse, accounting for nearly £1 in every £4 of goods exported from the UK, despite making up less than 1% of all UK firms. Mid-sized firms are also responsible for exporting £70 billion each year out of a UK total of £300 billion. According to BDO's figures, mid-market exports are also a vital part of the regional economy, with around 75% of all mid-market sales abroad taking place outside London and the South East. The North West alone is responsible for 10% of all mid-market goods exported - its annual value of just under £6.5 billion nearly equals London's £7.5 billion – but other regional powerhouses, such as the West Midlands, whose mid-market firms export £6.3 billion each year, and the East Midlands, which exports £5 billion, also contribute significantly. To view BDO's news release go to

Latest Global Economic Forecast. The latest National Institute Economic Review from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) has advised that following growth of 3.1% in 2013, the world economy will grow by 3.3% in 2014 and 3.5% in 2015. According to the report, the broad strengthening of growth that was generally expected to occur in the advanced economies in 2014 has not materialised. Indeed, data in recent months have shown a deterioration of growth performance in the Euro Area, and also in some key emerging market economies. Key risks include the normalisation of monetary policy in the US, and the associated financial market turbulence; and worsening deflationary pressures in the Euro Area exacerbated by policy gridlock. To view NIESR's news release go to

Experian highlights how SMEs trading abroad are risking exposure to bad debt and cash flow problems. Almost 85% of UK SMEs who operate internationally do not check the credit history of potential overseas customers or suppliers to verify whether a company is reputable, according to new research by Experian. Among SMEs who operate internationally, just one in six (16%) check the credit history of potential overseas partners. This compares to 55% of all small and medium sized businesses operating in the UK and 28% of micro businesses who check the credit reports of suppliers before doing business with them. According to Experian’s research, 56% of SMEs trading overseas assess businesses through relationship building, 36% check their customer references and credentials. However, a quarter of SMEs rely simply on undertaking desk research to compare a business with its competitors. To view Experian's news release go to

Latest forecast for UK Economy. The latest National Institute Economic Review from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) has reported that its experts anticipate UK GDP growth of 3% this year, moderating to 2.5% in 2015. They also advise that although UK economic statistics have recently undergone significant revisions, they do not change the broader picture: "the turnaround of the UK economy remains the weakest in the past century while the UK’s large productivity puzzle persists and, notwithstanding the gradual accumulation of an evidence base, remains largely unsolved." Should productivity growth fail to recover as expected, NIESR warns that the impact on both living standards and public finances will be significant. Externally, the generalised weakness of the global recovery and, in particular, continued stagnation (or worse) in the Euro Area, remain significant risks for the UK economy. To view NIESR's news release go to

Informal corporate insolvency procedures up by a quarter since 2010. According to new research by R3, the number of UK companies opting to be simply removed (‘struck-off’) from the Companies House register has jumped by 28% to 178,996 in 2013-14. R3 advises that the new data provides a more complete picture of company closures than the formal insolvency statistics alone – and may help explain the lower than expected number of formal insolvency procedures since the recession. Andrew Tate, Deputy-Vice President of R3, says: “The phenomenon of ‘zombie businesses’ – businesses that survived due to the unique circumstances of the last recession but had little chance of long-term recovery – could partly explain lower than expected insolvency numbers, but falling numbers of ‘zombie businesses’ have not been matched by rising insolvencies.” However, he continues: “It may well be that many of the UK’s ‘zombie businesses’ have been just removing themselves from the Companies House register rather than opting for a formal insolvency procedure.” To view R3's news release go to

US Small-business delinquency rates hit the lowest level on record. According to the most recent Experian/Moody’s Analytics Small Business Credit Index, US small-business credit conditions have improved and reached an all-time high and delinquency rates have reached the lowest level on record - falling to 8.8% from 9.3% the previous quarter. Findings from the report also showed that small businesses saw significant improvement in several other key business credit health categories. Most notably, they improved their payment behaviour in the third quarter, reducing the number of days they paid their bill beyond contracted terms by more than a day, or nearly 19%, from a year ago. Third-quarter findings also saw 11.9% fewer businesses filing for bankruptcy. To view Experian's news release go to

UK business confidence continues to fall due to uncertainties ahead. According to the latest ICAEW/Grant Thornton UK Business Confidence Monitor even though business confidence is still at a historically high level, it has fallen again as economic uncertainty impacts on firms’ plans for the year ahead. With the General Election less than six months away, the latest ICAEW/Grant Thornton UK Business Confidence Monitor (BCM) also indicates that skills shortages and regulatory requirements are more of a challenge now than in the run up to the last election in 2010. Scott Barnes, CEO of Grant Thornton UK LLP, commented: "The latest BCM results continue to reflect the ‘Indian summer’ feel to 2014 but there are signs that cooler conditions are approaching. Although confidence remains relatively high, financial indicators are beginning to reflect the uncertainties that businesses are feeling about their prospects for the year ahead." To view Grant Thornton's news release and access the full report go to

The UK's food retailing industry experiences the sharpest increase in ‘significant’ financial distress of all sectors. According to Begbies Traynor's Red Flag Alert research for Q3 2014, which monitors the financial health of UK companies, the UK's food retailing industry experienced the sharpest increase in ‘Significant’ financial distress of all sectors monitored, rising 11% over the past three months to 4,239 struggling businesses. On an annualised basis, the sector’s fortunes have deteriorated even further, with ‘significant’ financial distress increasing 53% from 2,766 last year. Meanwhile, more severe cases of ‘Critical’ financial distress rose 23% over the last quarter, including seven large food retailers, categorised as businesses with more than 500 employees. Of these, three are well-known household brands, all of which have incurred adverse financial actions over the past quarter; typically an indicator that they are failing to pay some creditors until well beyond the agreed terms. To view Begbies Traynor's news release go to

CBI sees steady UK growth against a choppier global outlook. According to the CBI’s latest economic forecast, the UK economy is on a firm footing with steady growth of 3% and 2.5% forecast in 2015 and 2016 (the fastest GDP growth rates in the G7 since the beginning of 2013), but a major risk to the recovery is the challenging global outlook - particularly in the Eurozone. However, the CBI also finds that the UK’s export performance remains disappointing, with export growth expected to slide into the red this year (-1.0%), before picking up in 2015 (3.6%), and strengthening further in 2016 (5.7%). John Cridland, CBI Director-General, said: “While the domestic picture is strong, the global backdrop is choppier. We are facing a heady mix of sluggish Eurozone growth, heightened tensions in Russia, Ukraine and the Middle East, and softening emerging markets, particularly in China, which could dent our export ambitions.” To view the CBI's news release go to

36% of UK small businesses shun overseas expansion. According to research by KPMG and YouGov, more than a third (36%) of small businesses have no interest in exploring overseas markets. The survey of 1100 UK SMEs found that complex legal regimes, followed closely by not having strong enough networks with overseas organisations and lack of tax incentives were the main barriers preventing small businesses from taking advantage of the huge growth potential offered by overseas markets. The challenges were less pronounced for mid-sized businesses where just 20% of respondents said that they had no interest in exploring overseas markets. Currently only 17% of UK medium-sized businesses generate revenues outside of the EU compared to 25% in Germany and 30% in Italy. According to the CBI, businesses are 11% more likely to survive if they export. To view KPMG's new release go to

Hilton Baird's latest SME Trends Index reports that 23% of UK SMEs have seen an increase in bad debt in the past six months. Hilton Baird has published its latest SME Trends Index which has found that 23% of SMEs have seen an increase in bad debt in the past six months. Companies with higher levels of bad debt were also struggling in other aspects of their business, and many of those reporting an increase in bad debt were forced to fall behind on payments of their own. As well as this, the increase in bad debts also had a negative impact on profit and turnover: 54% of those with an increase in bad debts saw their profits fall compared to 29% overall. To view the news release with a link to the full report go to

Russia in double trouble. The ever-tightening noose of sanctions and tumbling oil prices are combining to put the Russian economy in “double trouble” as 2015 approaches, according to a new IHS report revealed exclusively to GTR. The rouble has dropped 25% against the US dollar this year, and the ratings outlook for the country will continue to darken should Russian companies’ access to western debt markets remain limited. According to the report, further ratings downgrades are expected. “One hears a lot at the moment about Russian risks, but I’ve been told that, historically, Russians are good customers that always pay on the nail,” says director of sovereign risk at IHS and author of the global insight provider’s 2014 third quarter Sovereign Risk Review, Jan Randolph. “But the broader implications for trade are that the economy is weakening, and it’s an ongoing story." To view GTR's article go to

Protecting your business from cyber crime and data loss. According to new research by QBE, 32% of businesses in the UK are more concerned about the threat of cyber crime and data loss now than they were just six months ago. With the cost of cyber crime estimated to be in the region of £27 billion a year in the UK, and a recent study involving 36 large organisations in the UK finding that the average cost of cyber crime was calculated to be £2.99 million per annum, QBE has published a new report to examine in detail what can businesses do to protect themselves? To view QBE's report go to

Small increase in proportion of registered businesses in GB trading internationally between 2012 and 2013. The ONS has advised that its latest Annual Business Survey statistics reveal that 15.6% (308,300) of registered businesses engaged in international trade in the Non-Financial Business economy in 2013. This was a small increase on 2012, when the proportion of businesses that traded internationally was 15.2% (287,800 businesses). The Survey also found that in 2013, 66.7% of foreign-owned businesses in GB traded internationally, compared to only 15.0% of UK-owned businesses. However, the proportion for foreign-owned businesses who traded internationally decreased from 71.0% in 2012 whereas the proportion of UK-owned businesses increased from 14.5%. Businesses with a higher turnover were more likely to trade internationally in goods and/or services, with 75.1% of businesses with a turnover greater than £500 million trading goods and/or services, compared to 12.6% of businesses with a turnover less than £1 million in 2013. To view the ONS' detailed news release go to
Adapted from data from the Office for National Statistics licensed under the Open Government Licence v.2.0.

Career Opportunities:
Trade Credit & Political Risk Underwriter. Salary Dependent on Experience. Singapore
A Trade Credit and Political Risk Underwriter with a background in risk underwriting and strong financial analysis skills, across a wide variety of trade sectors, is required to join a leading reinsurer. You will need to demonstrate a good understanding of the trade credit industry and regional political environment as well as experience of using financial scoring tools and models. An excellent knowledge and grasp of policy wordings would be beneficial. Contact: Ref: IT488956GT. Guy Turton (EA Personnel Reg. no. R1435644).

Risk Underwriter / Credit Analyst - London.
This London based Credit Insurer are looking to recruit two Risk Underwriters into their team. The role itself will see you carrying out ongoing analysis on a portfolio of businesses to ensure their credit worthiness is monitored, recommending limit changes where appropriate, carrying out visits to the client and ultimately ensuring the profitability of the company. You'll working in a team environment reporting to a Team Manager who will be responsible for your training and development to ensure you become an expert within the industry. Excellent progression opportunity exists within the firm. To be considered for this opportunity you should have experience of carrying out financial analysis on businesses (not individuals) and recommending appropriate credit actions. This could be in a credit analysis, loan underwriting, credit underwriting or similar capacity. If this describes you and you're seeking a challenging yet rewarding career then please don't hesitate to contact Kerren Leach on 0207 092 3283 or (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digestwhen applying).

Risks Underwriter. London. Salary up to £40,000 with excellent benefits.
Looking to work for one of the worlds biggest organisation with-in credit risk? My client is seeking a Risk Underwriter to join the ever growing team. You should have a previous background with-in trade credit be a strong communicator and have the ability to build long lasting customer relationships. The role will involve: Monitoring risk exposure. Supporting commercial in steering customer loss ratio. Supporting the greater scope of projects and managers you will be interacting with on a daily basis. For more information or to apply please contact or call +44 (0) 207 220 4774. (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

Field Credit Analyst (Ref: 6440257). Leicestershire / Northants, Salary to £40,000 plus car and package.
This is a leader in the Credit Insurance Services market operating in 50 countries and part of a large Insurer company. They offer credit insurance services to enable customers to trade and build their business safely and esponsibly. As part of the Birmingham regional risk office, this role will be based from home covering the East Midlands area. The role holder will own a portfolio of clients across the region and you will manage your own diary involving home working, client meetings and occasional work in the Birmingham office. The main purpose of this role will be to manage a portfolio of risks in order to mitigate and prevent claims. You will monitor companies, conduct financial analysis, lead high level meetings, produce reports and take action in order to minimise risk of loss. Applications are welcome from individuals from any credit analyst background which could include, insurance, banking or financial services. Proven experience in analysing financial and economic information relevant to assessing credit risk is essential, as well as substantial experience in interpreting balance sheets, P and L and other financial statements. The role will involve board level meetings and as such applicants must be able to hold high level meetings with credibility and gravitas. To apply, please call Charlotte Webb on 0121 237 5550 or email (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

Trade Credit Account Executive. City of London. £35,000 - £70,000 per annum, negotiable.
An opportunity which now exists within the growing Trade Credit team of a major UK broker. You will have specialised in the field of Trade Credit insurance and have a broker based client facing/servicing background. You might also have experience/knowledge of Political Risks business although this is by no means essential. Our client's accounts are corporate although they will also consider individuals with SME Trade Credit account experience. If you have a client following, this will always be an advantage and obviously, our client will respect your restrictive covenant. Prospects and training with this key player are second to none. Salary will be dependent upon experience and what you have to "bring to the party". Apply today for immediate consideration.
We would strongly suggest that if your background/experience genuinely matches this vacancy requirement, you should call us directly to highlight your application. To apply, please email David Leslie at or call 020 7873 2271. (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

Trade Credit Account Handler, Thames Valley. Reading, Berkshire. £30,000 - £35,000 per annum, negotiable.
Our client is a leading insurance broker with a world class reputation. This is an opportunity to join as an International Trade Credit Account Handler, dealing with a wide range of international, corporate Trade Credit clients. Given the international nature of our client's business, you will need to be fluent in at least one other European language (in addition to English). You will have experience dealing with international Trade Credit clients, gained either with a broker or insurer. Alternatively, you may be considered without Trade Credit experience if your background is within Finance or Economics.
We would strongly suggest that if your background/experience genuinely matches this vacancy requirement, you should call us directly to highlight your application. To apply, please email David Leslie at or call 020 7873 2271. (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

Account Handler (Trade Credit), Reading, salary negotiable.
I am currently working with one of the UK's leading brokerages, who are looking to recruit an Account Handler to work within their Trade Credit team. This is a fantastic opportunity to work for an excellent employer who encourage long term development. Duties will include: To project manage, applying a high degree of personal initiative, the service profile for multinational clients and prospects with particular responsibility for credit limits, contractual documentation, stewardship reports, sector research and marketing. To develop and maintain a deep understanding of clients and prospects and their trade sectors, leading to driving relationships with these companies. Make a strong contribution to the team through own ideas, initiatives and concepts.
Previous trade credit experience is required for this role, although project management experience in an insurance capacity will also be considered. For more information please contact Daniel Hurley on 02380 828 606, or via email at (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

Senior Underwriter - Trade Credit. AIG, London.
AIG is recruiting for a Senior Underwriter with strong financial analysis skills and knowledge of UK and International corporate risks / trade sectors and export risks. Ideally candidate should be known to Local market with good commercial skills.
Key measures/Dimensions: Assist in setting and delivery of Trade Credit London strategy and budget. Setting Buyer risk appetite and underwriting standards for Trade Credit London. Develop new products for local markets. Establishing London as Centre of Excellence for EMEA.
Main duties/Accountabilities/Key Performance Indicators: Underwriting and monitoring of key buyer risks to achieve or better budgeted loss ratio. Ensure compliance of AIG underwriting standards, Credit procedures and PC guidelines. Identify risk opportunities to drive new business opportunities in order to achieve PC budget. Develop and maintain broker and client relationships to increase client retention and new business levels. Support PCM in meet deadlines for reporting PC strategy and budget development to senior management.
Technical skills & knowledge: Strong knowledge of XOL Credit Insurance. Expert Financial analysis skills. Knowledge of trade finance. Country / trade sector knowledge - risk awareness.
Experience: Insurance background. Awareness of Trade Credit Underwriting Practices.
For more information and/or to apply for this role, please go to (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

Political & Credit Risk Underwriter.
This major insurer who has operations in all of the key global hubs is looking to recruit an additional underwriter into its London operation. Due to the dynamic within the team and present skill-set they would like to recruit someone who is presently working within the London market in either an Underwriting or Broking capacity and is already known to the local market. You’ll be working as part of a small team of Underwriters who are responsible for writing a profitable book of business across all key sectors with emphasis on bank led business, although traders and corporates do play their part too. Typically the bulk of risks written are CF/CR with some CEN/CCP. As the team is fairly well established and very technically capable, they can be fairly flexible as to the level of individual brought in, this could range from Assistant Underwriter through to Underwriter or even an experienced and technically capable broker. Regardless of level, its key that you bring an outgoing and social personality as you’ll be expected to network heavily with brokers and clients and represent the organisation at events (formal and informal). This is an excellent opportunity to work in a team who can offer excellent training and development, good exposure to a wide variety of trade related and non-trade products, outstanding risk support in-house and the ability to really develop your market profile. To be considered you should have previous experience within an underwriting team (e.g 3-5yrs) even if your scratch is relatively recent, or at least 5 - 10 years broking these risks with a solid technical understanding. Please don’t hesitate to apply as this opportunity is available immediately. Please contact Kerren Leach on +44 207 092 3283 or email for more information. (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

Trade Credit Account Executive, London, £40,000 - £60,000 plus benefits.
A new opportunity with a developing broker has arisen for an experienced individual with a track record of acquiring & developing new business. The successful candidate will have considerable knowledge within the credit space and will be a self-starter committed to providing a quality service. For a confidential discussion, please contact Nicole on 07931 808 349 or Ref:J9402. (Please mention Credit Insurance News Digest when applying).

New Appointments
Equinox Global has announced the appointment of Vladimir Malenic at its new central Paris office. Vladimir joins from Euler Hermes and prior to this he spent four years at Coface in Germany and France, where he was responsible for a team of risk analysts.

Markel International has appointed Linda Naili to its trade credit team in Singapore. Based in Singapore, Ms Naili will be responsible for developing business in the region and will work together with Abhishek Chhajer, senior underwriter and head of trade credit in Asia Pacific, to grow Markel’s Asia Pacific trade credit book. Commenting on her appointment, Ewa Rose, managing director of Markel International’s trade credit division, said: “We are actively taking steps to boost our resources so that we are well-placed to serve the growing interest in trade credit solutions across the key Asian markets."

Euler Hermes has appointed Michael Diederich as the new chief executive officer for its operations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (DACH region). The appointment will become effective at the beginning of 2015, pending regulatory approval. Mr Diederich will be based in Hamburg and report to Wilfried Verstraete, Chairman of the Euler Hermes Board of Management. He succeeds Ralf Meurer who served as CEO for the DACH region for five years and will take a project responsibility in the HR Organisation of Allianz SE. Effective the beginning of January 2015, Meurer will also join the supervisory board of Euler Hermes AG, Germany.

Clearview Credit & Financial Risks has announced that Rachel Stevens has joined its business. Rachel's skill base includes over twenty years as a specialist Credit insurance broker with Sedgwick Credit, Willis & Marsh. Based in the West Midlands, Rachel will be focusing on business development and client management.

About this issue's sponsor: AIG
American International Group, Inc. (AIG) is a leading international insurance organisation serving customers in more than 130 countries and jurisdictions.

In the UK, AIG Europe Limited is one of the largest companies specialising in the UK business insurance market. With offices throughout the country, we insure many of the UK’s top businesses, thousands of mid sized and smaller companies, as well as millions of individuals.

Over the past 50 years we have established an enviable reputation for developing innovative products that keep in step with new trends and directions in business. Today, we have one of the widest product ranges in the market.

In the Trade Credit insurance market AIG has a successful track record with blue chip, household name clients. We are the largest Excess of Loss player in the UK and have been underwriting since 1970 with multilingual, multinational teams across the world. Our focus is on understanding and underwriting the client, providing consistent cover resulting in long term, well-established relationships.

Credit Insurance News Digests: Sponsorship
Sponsoring an issue of Credit Insurance News Digest is a great way to promote your company or brand to a committed audience of trade credit insurance professionals.
If you are interested in sponsoring an issue in 2015 see our sponsorship page for further information.
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