Adrian Colosso is to become non-executive chairman at Howden Broking Group

So, Adrian Colosso is back. He’s landed a non-executive role as chairman of Howden Broking Group. Colosso was famous in the broking market when he was boss of Heath Lambert: he was tough, uncompromising and had a strong gut instinct and knowledge of the broker market that was matched by a few. Yes, he wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but he certainly had a decent track record.

Colosso started Crowley Colosso, a successful art broker that he ran for many years. He won the top job in 2004 at Heath Lambert. The company was saddled with a sizeable pension deficit and directionless. In seven years, he turned the business round, and most importantly, sold it for £97m to Gallagher in 2011. He was assisted by some skilled people, including Mike ‘Two Brains’ Bruce, who was managing director; legal stalwart William Bloomer, who oversaw the disposal of 30 companies as the firm moved from a wholesale to retail broker; and let’s not forget former communications chief Elliot Lane, who polished up the image of the firm prior to the sale.

Howden does not need a shot in the arm like Heath did a few years ago. However, Colosso will play an important role in offering advice to the young and ambitious Howden management team. Group boss David Howden, who is head of Hyperion, likes entrepreneurial characters who are not afraid to be bold. He loathes bureaucracy and unnecessary business red tape. In Colosso, they have someone who will add insight, energy and a touch of spice. It’s an interesting, potentially good match.