The hire of the ‘established insurance heavyweight’ aims to help the MGA branch into a new market niche

Multi-class MGA Pen Underwriting has appointed former Hiscox staffer Tom Dixon in the newly created role of head of technology, effective from 23 September 2021, in line with its plans to diversify into new niche market segments.

In this role, Dixon will build and develop a range of professional indemnity solutions that are tailored to meet the evolving needs of technology companies in the UK, such as software developers, internet service providers, GDPR consultants and specialists in blockchain, artificial intelligence and data analytics.

Dixon’s appointment forms a crucial element of Pen Underwriting’s strategic growth plan to become a £1bn gross written premium (GWP) underwriting and distribution business.

The MGA plans to achieve this ambition through investing in top industry talent and specialist expertise in new niche sector or product areas, alongside acquisitions and innovation.

Dixon will report to Adrian Scott, managing director of international and financial lines at Pen Underwriting.

Speaking on the new hire, Scott said: “No sector will be as pivotal to the future success of the UK economy as technology. The pandemic has only hastened the extent of its influence in what was already one of our fastest growing industries, with the UK’s technology sector securing one-third of all European tech investments back in 2019.

“The fact that 10% of current UK job vacancies are for tech jobs also speaks volumes about the strength, resilience and upward projection of the digital economy.

“Yet compared to the size of the opportunity, there are relatively few insurance providers specialising in this sector, creating untapped demand.

“Brokers are looking for greater choice, empowered underwriters, cutting-edge wordings and a problem-solving approach that will give them a competitive advantage.

“We intend to offer all that and more with Tom at the helm to drive the development of our new specialism. His extensive knowledge, experience and relationships in this sector are second to none.

“Our ambition is to build Pen into a top tier tech insurer in the UK and, as an established insurance heavyweight in this field, Tom is ideally placed to make that a reality. We very much look forward to welcoming Tom to the team.”

Seasoned market practitioners to support brokers

Previously, Dixon worked as head of technology for insurer Hiscox – he led the firm’s UK and Ireland technology practice since 2018.

During his tenure at Hiscox, which he joined back in 2009, Dixon has held a range of underwriting, business development and leadership roles focused on professional indemnity and specialist commercial insurance.

Nick Wright, chief business development officer at Pen Underwriting, added: “Investing in key strategic hires like Tom, who are seasoned market practitioners with impressive track records in developing solutions for fast-evolving areas of risk, is a vital part of our strategic plan to accelerate Pen’s growth.

“More importantly, the greater the number of industries and professionals we can support, the wider our underwriting appetite becomes and the more we can support our brokers in building their own businesses.”