Gareth Hughes takes on Linda Courtney’s old role in Reading and Maidstone

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AXA Commercial Lines and Personal Intermediary has hired former Aviva executive Gareth Hughes as branch manager for Reading and its satellite branch in Maidstone.

Hughes replaces Linda Courtney, who was promoted to branch director for the south region in December last year.

Since taking her new role, Courtney has continued to run the Reading and Maidstone branches on an interim basis until a replacement was found.

Hughes worked for Aviva and predecessor company Norwich Union for more than a decade in various roles. He was most recently key account manager for the insurer.

In his new role at AXA he will have responsibility for delivering profitable growth across Reading and Maidstone and will be a key member of the wider management team for the south region.

He will also be responsible for delivering AXA’s 2020 growth plans through a wide range of brokers in the region from smaller independents and strategic partners to the large and growing local schemes business and Premier Partners in the region.

Premier Partners is AXA’s community for independent regional brokers.

Courtney said: “Gareth has a great reputation with the local brokers and I am really pleased that he has agreed to join us at such an important stage in our development.

“As we roll out our mid-market proposition, Premier Partners, our new e-traded products and continue with the digitisation of our claims service, we have so much more to offer our brokers and so many more ways to help them win and retain clients.

“Gareth’s experience and reputation in the local market make him the ideal person to ensure that not only do we market our products and services effectively but that we deliver them in a way that benefits brokers and their clients.”