Fee and commission income (2002): £717.3m

Pre-tax profit (2002): Not supplied

10 Trinity Square
London EC3P 3AX

Tel: 020 7488 8111

Website: ww ...

Fee and commission income (2002): £717.3m

Pre-tax profit (2002): Not supplied

10 Trinity Square
London EC3P 3AX

Tel: 020 7488 8111

Website: www.willis.com

Year established: 1828

Major shareholders: KKR (23%)

Main lines of business: All major areas of insurance broking

Number of UK branches: 20

Number of UK employees (average for 2002): 4,000

Chief officer: Joe Plumeri

Biography: Joe Plumeri is chairman and chief executive, Willis Group Holdings Ltd. Since assuming the role of chairman and chief executive in October of 2000, Plumeri has instigated a number of initiatives that have revitalised and re-focused the efforts of this 174-year-old pioneer in commercial insurance broking. Building on Willis's global reputation, Plumeri created a growth strategy that has quickly and dramatically increased revenues and margins, reduced debt and bureaucracy, and unified the company's 13,000 employees operating in more than 300 locations in 74 countries.

Plumeri took the company public (NYSE:WSH) in 2001. During that year, Willis was recognised as the third best performing IPO listed on the New York Stock Exchange. His accomplishments at Willis are perhaps best reflected in the level of employee ownership in Willis stock, which has grown to over 68% from just 3% in 1998 - a barometer of his efforts to instill a sense of common purpose as the platform for marketplace success.

Prior to joining Willis, Plumeri enjoyed 32 years at Citigroup and its predecessor companies. One of his most notable accomplishments there involved the integration of the consumer businesses at Citicorp and Travelers Group, serving as the chief executive of Citibanking North America, which included Citibank's retail branches and Citigroup Investment Services. In just one year, he improved the unit's overall financial performance with earnings soaring to US$415m, a rise of 400% from $108m in the prior year. Plumeri also served on Citigroup's global consumer planning group.

Plumeri's responsibilities at Citicorp, following the merger that created Citigroup, were in addition to his existing posting as chairman and chief executive of Travelers Primerica Financial Services division, a direct sales company of more than 150,000 independent agents, which he assumed in 1995. During the five-year period under his leadership, the company grew earnings to $550m, from $180m.

Plumeri had been vice chairman of the Travelers Group since 1994. Primerica and Citibank - two of the crown jewels in Citigroup's portfolio - are among the largest financial services operations in the world, with over $100bn in combined assets.

From the start of his career, he progressed rapidly into management positions with predecessor companies of Travelers Group. Notably, he became president and managing partner of Shearson in 1990, and was appointed president of the merged Smith Barney Shearson in 1993.

During his long and distinguished career in financial services, Plumeri has been continuously recognised for his expertise in strategic marketplace analysis, innovative operational methods, and his ability to motivate large organisations to deliver growing earnings through increased revenue and expense discipline. His management accomplishments have been reported in every major business publication, and he is a frequent speaker at various professional forums.

Directorships/corporate boards: Board of Visitors of the College of William and Mary; The United Negro College Fund; The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse; Commissioner of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority; Velcero, LLC.

Awards: The TC and Elizabeth Clarke Business Medallion from the College of William and Mary School of Business Administration.

Board of trustees: American Institute for Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters

Education: College of William and Mary (Williamsburg, VA)

BA in History and Education

Attended New York Law School

Birthplace: Trenton, New Jersey, 7 July 1943

Personal: Married with three grown children

Key dates from Willis History:
1828 Henry Willis & Co established

1843 Dumas & Wylie established

1886 Faber Brothers established

1898 Willis, Faber & Co formed by merger

1905 R A Corroon & Co established

1928 Willis Faber & Dumas formed by merger

1963 Corroon & Black Corporation formed by merger

1976 Willis Faber listed on London Stock Exchange

1990 Willis Corroon Group formed by merger

1998 Willis Corroon Group acquired by Trinity Acquisition

1999 The Group is consolidated under one name - Willis

2001 Willis Group Holdings listed on New York Stock Exchange

2003 Willis celebrates its 175th anniversary