Chairman John Tiner describes the whole episode as ‘unfortunate’ 

Ardonagh chairman John Tiner said today the broking group was ‘very pleased’ after nearly all of Gallagher’s legal claims were dismissed.

In a criticism at some of the controversial language used by Gallagher management, following the judge’s comments on what took place, Tiner said he hoped ‘the behaviour exhibited in this case is not reflective of our industry here in the UK.’

The judge held up only one claim of Gallagher and Alesco, meaning Ardonagh faced damages of only £100,000 out of nearly £10m claimed.

Gallagher will now have to pay £3.1m towards Ardonagh’s legal costs.

The judge held that:

  • There was no unlawful team move
  • There was no conspiracy
  • The loan made to Peter Burton was not unlawful
  • Peter Burton did not solicit clients during his garden leave
  • With one exception (in respect of a single client), Ardonagh did not induce any breaches of contract
  • To the extent individual employees breached obligations, this did not result in further loss

Tiner said: “We are very pleased that today’s judgement so comprehensively supports the position taken by our Board all along.

“We have remained confident about the strength of our legal position and I find it highly regrettable that the claimants chose to pursue their case on the basis of personal attacks which sought to disrupt our business.

“It is unfortunate that we have had to defend these misconceived claims in public. At a challenging time for the UK insurance industry, this case has imposed an unnecessary burden on public resources and tarnished the industry’s reputation through the revelations of the abusive and racist language used by the claimants.”

He added: “Today’s definitive judgement brings an end our involvement in the matter. I very much hope that the behaviour exhibited in this case is not reflective of our industry here in the UK and that, as the world’s leading international insurance market we can continue to excel on the basis of professionalism, reliability, innovation and respect.”

In a statement, Gallagher said: “We are, of course, disappointed with the result. However, we respect Judge Freedman’s decision and we now consider the matter closed.”

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