Motor business put into run-off, 45 job losses at Norwich office

HSBC Insurance today said it would cease underwriting motor business through its two insurance operations, HSBC Insurance (UK) and HSBC Insurance Management Services Ltd.

The decision couldl lead to 45 job losses at the Norwich office, which will close on December 1. HSBC said it would try to redeploy staff wherever possible.

HSBC Insurance will continue to service existing policy holders until their policy is due for renewal.

In addition, any quotes that have been issued prior to September 2nd will be honoured for 30 days from the date of issue.

An HSBC spokesman said: “Members of HSBC’s Insurance staff based in Norwich, Birmingham and Brentwood are today being briefed on the implications of the announcement and the longer term plans for the insurance business.

“The other two sites, at Birmingham and Brentwood will remain open.

“HSBC Insurance’s strategy is to now focus on life, pensions and investments business, and to move away from underwriting general motor insurance in the UK.”

Earlier this summer, HSBC injected £80m into the business’s capital base following the departure of its senior management team and concerns over low reserves.

At the time, Neil Utley was thought to be the sole bidder for the business after HSBC rejected an offer fronted by Andrew Gibson, formerly chief executive of Highway, for being too low.