Gross written premium (1999):

Gross written premium (1999):

Co-operative Wholesale Society (CWS)

Year company established:

UK head office:
Miller Street
M60 0AL
tel: 0161 837 4100
fax: 0161 837 5881



Company history:
The Co-operative Insurance Society was founded in 1867 by pioneers of the UK co-operative movement.

Initially it provided commercial insurance for the growing number of co-operative retail societies. Then CIS began to offer life assurance in 1886, subsequently developing a range of personal insurance products. Its status as a company was changed to that of co-operative society in 1899, and from that date it began to transact industrial branch life assurance. Business rose dramatically as a result of the rapid development of a direct sales force. The large sales force serves nearly 3.5 million families. Long established as a major household and motor insurer, CIS is also a key provider in its other main areas of business – life assurance, mortgage lending, personal pensions and unit trusts including ISAs. CIS continues to deliver real value for its motor insurance customers

Chief officer:
David Hollas, chief general manager

David Hollas was appointed chief general manager at CIS in 1997. He was previously a deputy chief general manager. He joined the society in 1964 and has held a number of senior management positions, including that of appointed actuary

UK branch offices:

UK staff:

UK general insurance agents:

Main classes of business:
property – 46.5%,
motor – 50.7%
liability 2.8%

Key general insurance personnel:
Martyn Bennett, general manager and actuary
David Briscall, assistant general manager
Bob Seedhouse, manager
Mike Harvey, manager