Beazley plc is the first listed Lloyd’s insurer to provide results for the year to 31 December 2021. The results for syndicates managed by Beazley and supported by third party capital (syndicates 623, 5623 and 6107) are not yet available, although the group results offer a great deal of encouragement ahead of the syndicate returns.

After the covid-impacted results for 2020, the group has returned to strong profit, recording a profit before tax of $369m (2020 loss $50m), with gross premiums up by 30% and the combined ratio improving from 109% to 93%. Beazley puts the full year average rate increase on the renewal book at 24%.

Summary results are as follows


Year to 31.12.20

Year to 31.12.21

% change

Gross premium written




Net premium earned




Profit/(loss) before tax



Not meaningful

Claims ratio



15 points better

Expense ratio



1 point better

Combined ratio



16 points better

The largest contributions to the profit were from the cyber and executive risks and speciality lines divisions at $100m and $141m respectively. Only the reinsurance division ended the year in loss.  

There is no change to the estimated first party loss arising out of Covid-19 claims on the business, put at $340m. There is a small ongoing exposure to pandemic related claims for events taking place in 2022, although these relate to business written before the outbreak of Covid-19.

The reserve strategy has been consistent over time. In aggregate, reserves are held at a level in excess of actuarial estimates. The target range for this surplus is between 5% and 10% above the actuarial estimates – it has remained constant in the year, measured at 6.4% at the end of 2021 compared to 6.3% twelve months ago. This approach tends to give rise to releases from reserves over time and this year’s result includes a release from reserves held for prior years of $210m (2021 $93m). All divisions of the business contributed a positive release to the overall number.

Beazley is a leader of cyber business, which has been subject to a process of re-underwriting following an increase in ransomware attacks. Average rates have increased by 49%, with an increased focus on risk management to minimise the likelihood of a successful attack. The account has returned to overall profit in 2021.

The full results press release can be found here and the analysts’ slide pack here.