It’s been a week of big parties, big hangovers and even bigger stories


I’m at the Institute of Insurance Brokers’ swansong House of Commons reception, where I say hello to ex-Willis chief executive Brendan McManus. Good to see him out and about in town in high spirits and looking forward to the challenge that awaits at Giles. I’m shaking off a bit of a hangover after last night’s Insurance Times Awards. I cringe as I vaguely remember being at the front of a conga that snaked its away around the Battersea Evolution centre.


I make it down to the Swinton cocktail bash - always a good one. Bump into Ink Underwriting boss Mike Smith, who tells me that he’s doing the Ho Chi Minh bike trail next year.

I thought I had it hard cycling with a 14-stone frame, so imagine grinding uphill with 22 stone. Nevertheless, Smith remains confident.


It’s looking ever more likely that Groupama UK is going to be sold. I wonder who the buyers will be? Meanwhile, AXA’s broker boss Mike Keating exits the company after a long career at the French insurer. He’ll probably resurface somewhere soon. If I were a betting man, I’d say it will be with a broking outfit. I’m picking up a rumour that investors are getting tickled by the prospect of a takeover for Homeserve. With all the recent FSA problems, that would make an interesting acquisition.


RSA exits broker motorbike in the UK. Could this trigger rate rises?


Deadline day and it’s all about grinding through the pages.