It’s a man’s game
I was amused to read one of these new-fangled blogs by Bollington chairman Paul Moors this week. No self-respecting insurance blog would be complete without a reference to sport, and Paul does not disappoint. Paul describes his own amusement at seeing Butterworth Spengler chairman and managing director Gary Spengler refereeing an under-10s rugby match - wearing a vibrant pink and yellow rugby shirt.
Follow that camel
Egypt - what a place for a holiday. I hear that Towergate non-executive director Andy Homer is taking a break in the country, which is still undergoing civil unrest following the overthrow of the government last year. One well-placed mole, who knows Homer well, quipped: ‘I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s leading the next revolution out there.” Andy Homer as a modern-day Lawrence of Arabia? Hmmmm.
Keep your skills updated
City minister Mark Hoban is a chartered accountant by background. While he has not practised for many years since entering parliament, he told an audience at his Lloyd’s lecture last week that his professional institute was in touch recently to check up on what he was doing to keep his skills up to date. He asked if piloting the government’s reforms of financial regulation through parliament counted. Fair enough, they replied.
All you need is … tea
Never mind the expensive lawyers, when there’s a dispute, all you need is a cup of tea and chance to chat. After resolving a legal dispute with Endsleigh, Markerstudy underwriting director Gary Humphreys says the relationship with its former claims handler is now “amicable”. “The irony in all these things is that the best way to get it solved is to sit down with the chief executives in the room,” he says. All’s well that ends well, then.
The London market can be a cruel, harsh place. Just ask BMS chief executive Carl Beardmore. He hails from Stoke-on-Trent and apparently some in the market occasionally express incredulity that a man from anywhere north of Watford has what it takes to make it in the big city. That said, if Mr Beardmore was hoping to dispel regional stereotypes, he might be taking the wrong approach - he allegedly appeared in an industry publication replete with flat cap and whippet.
Am I the only one who feels a little irritated by the Direct Line ads? It’s not the acting by Chris Addison and Alexander Armstrong, who earn their comic crust. No, it’s the idea that the company offers face-to-face service - never the point of the RBS direct insurer’s business model, as one broker chief executive pointed out to me the other day.