10-year contract awarded ahead of rivals Marsh, Aon, Willis and JLT for £15.9bn transport project.

Free trial analysis: Has Heath crossed the line?

Heath Lambert has beaten its global broker rivals to land the blockbuster 10-year insurance contract for the £15.9bn Crossrail project, one of the largest construction programmes in Europe.

Heath, which will be responsible for designing and placing the insurance for the project that will incorporate over 20km of underground tunnels and nine new stations at locations including Paddington, Liverpool Street and Tottenham Court Road, won the tender from other bidders including Marsh, Aon, Willis and JLT.

The contract – the value of which was not disclosed – was awarded after a six-month tender period. It is one of Heath’s project risks division’s largest deals to date and represents a major win for the broker after it lost the account of FTSE 250 company, WS Atkins, last month.

It also follows the sale of the broker’s UK wholesale, reinsurance and aerospace divisions to Cooper Gay, and its global business solutions unit to AJ Gallagher, as part of the company’s strategy to focus on retail broking.

“[Heath Lambert] has a proven track record of delivering comprehensive insurance programmes to the transportation sector.

Mark Fell, Crossrail

Crossrail will run from Heathrow to Abbey Wood, joining the Great Western and Great Eastern railway networks via a network of underground tunnels. Preparatory works will start next year, with main construction commencing in 2010 and the service opening in 2017.

Graham Barr, chairman of the project risks group at Heath Lambert, said winning the deal was the result of the company’s recent decision to integrate many of the its business units, including transportation, construction, real estate, private finance initiative and terrorism under a single management structure.

Mike Hawkes, executive director for transportation at Heath Lambert said: “The procurement process was one of the most demanding we have been involved in and it is great to have won through. Our expertise, passion for the project, team ethic and innovative design of a programme to meet the 10 year construction period were the main reasons for our appointment.”

Mark Fell, Crossrail’s legal services director added: “[Heath Lambert] has a proven track record of delivering comprehensive insurance programmes to the transportation sector and we were impressed by the quality, depth and completeness of the presentation and proposal put forward.”

Following the sale of its non-core businesses to Cooper Gay, Heath has revenues in the region of £100m.