A guide to this week's movements in the insurance industry



ABC Insurance has announced the appointment of staff at its new Sheffield branch office. The branch will be headed by Mick Davis, formerly regional manager at NIG’s Leeds commercial branch. He has over 30 years’ underwriting experience in the local market.

Davis will be joined by three new staff. Kim Chambers has been appointed branch underwriting manager. Previously Chambers was operations manager at NIG Leeds and she will be responsible for generating premium growth and underwriting profit.

James Leigh and Jonnie Armstrong have been appointed as regional sales executives with responsibility for business development and broker relationship management.Leigh joins ABC from Greystone and will be responsible for developing the North West region. Armstrong will focus on business development in Yorkshire and the North East. He has previously held sales and development roles with NIG, Zurich and Abbey Legal Protection.

Markel International

Markel International, the specialty property and casualty insurer, has appointed energy underwriter Chris Touhey to its marine and energy division.

Touhey will work alongside Julian Samuel in developing the existing energy account.

Touhey has worked in the London market since 2001 starting his career at Hiscox before moving to Brit as an assistant energy underwriter.


Direct Commercial

Motor fleet specialist Direct Commercial announced the promotion of three people to senior positions.

Bob Crothers has been appointed managing director. He joined Direct Commercial as underwriting director in 2003. Crothers has over 20 years’ experience in the motor fleet and broking market.

Chris Webb becomes associate director and Liam Guilfoyle has also been appointed associate director, having been promoted to accounts manager in 2006.


Ace UK has promoted Diane Davidson to UK and Ireland directors’ and officers’ (D&O) regional manager.

Davidson will be responsible for the development and management of all UK regional business for D&O, pension trustee liability and employment practices liability classes.

Davidson was responsible for last year’s successful roll- out to UK brokers of Ace’s D&O offering through the company’s e-commerce venture, Ace Online.

Davidson joined Ace 18 months ago from AIG, where she was responsible for the development of all lines of commercial business throughout the East Midlands. She previously worked at Zurich for 17 years.

Cardif Pinnacle

Cardif Pinnacle, part of BNP Paribas group and one of the UK’s largest creditor insurers, has further expanded its motor finance division by appointing Mark Pain as business development manager.

Pain will be responsible for managing both the creditor and GAP portfolios across several blue chip accounts.

Pain previously worked for CLM, an independent fleet management company. Prior to CLM, Pain worked for Renault Financial Services in the business finance sector - securing new contract hire busines.


Broker-only insurer NIG has appointed Dean Laming as the new regional manager for its Redhill operation.

Laming will be responsible for managing the growth and service delivery proposition NIG offers to its broker partners in Surrey, Dorset and Hampshire.

Formerly operations manager at Redhill for NIG, Laming has over 10 years’ experience. He has also worked for Royal & SunAlliance and Independent Insurance.


Close Premium Finance

Close Premium Finance has announced that Simon Bailey has become account manager for the Yorkshire region.

Ernst & Young

Steve Mitchell has joined Ernst & Young, where he will help to maintain and build the firm’s profile and service delivery capability in the global reinsurance market.

Crawford & Co

Crawford & Company UK has made a senior appointment to strengthen its UK technical services group.

David Townsend joins the corporate and major incident team as a major loss specialist and will be based in London.

Townsend began his career with McLarens, where he rose to become a regional director. Following Capita’s acquisition of McLarens, Townsend became an associate partner and complex team leader within the new Teceris entity.

His areas of specialisation include the hotel and leisure industry, along with retail and manufacturing.



Oval continues to commit to the East Midlands with its latest appointment. Peter Matthews has been given the role of the regional managing director of the East Midlands.

This is the third regional managing director Oval has appointed within the past six months, with Patrick O’Connell being appointed for the southern region in February and Paul Kerry for the Scottish region in March.

Matthews aims to make Oval the broker of choice in the East Midlands, and is committed to building the corporate book of business, increasing revenue and looking for future acquisitions.

Matthews says: “I see the future of insurance broking more with the consolidators, companies like Oval, because that’s where the gap in the industry is. Some of the large brokers are losing focus and are tied up in internal issues.”

Matthews wants to bring the region’s financial services and broking businesses closer together. His aim is to give clients the convenience of one access point to all of Oval’s expertise.

Previously Matthews spent 19 years with Marsh where his last role was as head of the Milton Keynes office.

Outside of the office Matthews enjoys playing golf and sailing.