Over the past several months Foodbuy has been working to build an insurance program to help golf course members with their ever changing insurance needs.

Foodbuy has partnered with Navacord, one of Canada’s largest insurance brokers, and Selectpath to deliver an unparalleled insurance program exclusively for Foodbuy’s golf course members.

Foodbuy conducts research to gauge the industry’s needs on key operational issues and a major area of
frustration that was identified involved Insurance. Our members asked us – Who should we choose? What types of coverage do we need to be looking at? How do we compare pricing? Troy Taylor, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Marketing outlined the process: “We had a simple goal. How can we help to further educate the sector about insurance and help rewrite the insurance agenda to better reflect the realities of the golf business? We wanted to partner with a company that can offer programs for a 9-hole municipal course right through to a higher-end facility that may have multiple venues and
complex needs. Navacord and Selectpath were the clear leaders and the best choice for our members.”

The key to choosing Selectpath was their extensive qualifications in this area with hundreds of golf courses currently in their stable from coast to coast. Selectpath simply has a fresh approach, and they understand the unique needs of golf courses.

Steve Cox, Managing Partner of Selectpath, explained their process. “I like to call it insurance 101: The risk audit education process. Ultimately, we try to help operators understand what they can do in order to reduce their insurance rates. We educate operators on the ins and outs of the insurance industry.

“We bring an entrepreneurial approach to insurance, and we re-define the process on behalf of our clients, not the insurer’s agenda. As a result, we hope to breathe new life into a very old-school Industry.”
Selectpath helps operators look at their total insurance package needs including who is actually underwriting it. Unfortunately, most operators do not know this information.

“Everyone has a friend in the insurance business. We find far too often that the broker you are dealing with is actually employed by the same insurance company who is insuring you. So, whose interest are they really acting on? Yours, or their ‘boss’, the insurers? You guessed it, certainly not yours,” added Cox.

How familiar is this story…. Your insurance broker appears, advising that you must hurry through the renewal process. because you can’t let it lapse. Then you are told what needs to be covered and with which insurer. This is consistently followed by the annual explanation of why the price is going up again. Really?! Cox continued, “At Selectpath we are not owned by an insurance company. It is just a flat-out conflict of interest, and our mandate is to act 100% for the operator, full stop. The sector can be stuck in the past when it comes to commercial insurance. Therefore, operators are at the mercy of the Insurers’ agenda.”

Selectpath’s Risk Audit process is designed to allow the operator to get better visibility on their higher risk areas. Selectpath looks back at policies and claims and then looks forward to developing short and long-term strategies to blend insurer risk appetites, pricing and terms. Then, Selectpath looks for areas that can help operators reduce risk, which ultimately will lead to reduced premiums.

We asked Cox what he is seeing more of today. “Frankly, in most small to mid-level courses the operator
is managing the tee sheet, serving food, watching the pro shop and maybe even cutting some grass. Managing key risk areas is usually not top of mind. That is where we truly become their agent and supporting business partner. Things that are now top of mind are:

Theft: Do you have the right coverage for your carts? Have you done an audit of the equipment that you store? Have you taken inflation into consideration, for example the cost of a driver is not the same as it was 10 years ago. Even bunker sand is being stolen now!

Cyber security: As golf courses become more and more cashless, there are ample opportunities for cyber attacks.

Vandalism: While most insurers cover fairway damage, Selectpath goes even further and covers greens and irrigation. It can be a $50,000+ bill to replace a green. If you are in an urban area, you must consider these replacement costs.

Environmental hazards: We rise above other insurance brokers by conducting a deep dive assessment in the area of environmental hazards to make sure the key governmental regulation boxes are checked.

What sets Selectpath apart is they review your total business and look at all your potential areas of risk. Do you have a gym, day camp, pump house, or banquet facilities? Food delivery, fireworks, even pickleball courts are now becoming a part of the equation. All of these can play a factor in potential lawsuits or damages that must be considered.

As Cox summarized, “If we can help Foodbuy members become better educated and have the right supporting policies in place to help reduce their costs, we have done our job.”

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