In whose hands does the future of the Insurance Industry lie? We take a look at 25 brokers tipped for greatness
Construction account manager
Stephen Hegarty has been with BJP for eight years, having joined as an account handler from Marsh. As BJP has developed, so has Hegarty. Having run the construction team for the past five years he has shown a continued growth in account knowledge and team leadership. The success of his team and himself is built on a continued thirst for knowledge of the construction industry and its relationship with insurance – this with the personal development of team members who have all been with Hegarty for at least the past two and a half years.
He is a member of the team leader group, which is part of the overall company management team, which takes a major role in the training and development of all staff. Hegarty has relationships with many industry introducers and is well respected by colleagues and insurers alike. He is undoubtedly a career insurance person.
W Denis Credit Risks
Nicola Gallamore has been an intrinsic part of the W Denis Credit Risks team since she joined the company in 2005. In her time with the team, she has very quickly built up her own portfolio of clients, in addition to taking on servicing of new business brought in by colleagues. Gallamore has completed her ACII exams and, in keeping with this qualification, has managed to juggle the demands of the job with keeping up to date with the various CPD requirements of the institute.
Her approach to work is exemplary. Her attitude towards work and the friendly and smiling manner in which she relates to colleagues, clients and underwriters cannot be faulted.
Turner & Company
James Moore’s journey at Turner began six years ago as an inexperienced personal lines handler. His enthusiasm, comprehensive knowledge of all insurance classes, and hunger for progression has allowed him to rise to the position of account executive. Four weeks into his new role, Moore secured one of Turner & Co’s largest and most prestigious accounts. Still only 26, he passionately provides customers with service and expertise usually provided by brokers with far greater experience, and he constantly outperforms his peers. As a result he now handles his own large commercial account.
Moore achieved his Cert CII qualification rapidly after joining the company and is currently actively studying for his ACII, which he is committed to achieving. His understanding of the industry has allowed him to implement many successful changes within the firm. Moore is a popular face on the social circuit. He appreciates that relationships with insurers are paramount when trading.
Reich Insurance Brokers
Simon Taylor’s energy and enthusiasm drives and enables his personal and business growth.
A loss adjuster background has given him an excellent level of technical expertise. Allied to this is a business acumen that has taken Reich to the pre-eminent position it enjoys.
Although provincially based, Taylor is in no way limited in breadth of ambition or scope of solution when working on his client’s behalf.
His approach has at its heart the desire to provide a demonstrably superior proposition for his customers. He sees his customers both as insureds and insurers. To underpin this he displays loyalty and commitment to long term and sustainable relationships with a view to all parties finding benefit and reward.
The personal development of those around Taylor forms an eminently valuable facet through which he demonstrates his commitment to the future. He is a role model for the business.
Towergate Risk Solutions (TRS) Leeds
Jonathan Webb is responsible for 85 staff and a client base controlling £20m GWP. He was recently voted Newcomer of the Year at Towergate’s annual management conference held in Vilamoura.
Since joining Towergate last year, Webb has transformed TRS Leeds to a top performing Towergate business in terms of financial performance. He has overseen an improved focus on sales and customer service, which has seen sales increase by 32% and pre-tax profits rise 47%.
Earlier this year, TRS Leeds completed its largest ever corporate client win and has also been successful in attracting new affinity relationships, such as IFA networks, which has contributed to over £800,000 of new business income.
Webb has established strong business relationships with local insurers and recruitment agencies, positioning TRS Leeds as the leading local broker and employer of opportunity.
Charlotte Best has made exceptional progress since joining Atkinson Smith in 1999 aged 17. She made rapid progress through our personal lines and small business teams, joining the core commercial team as an account handler in 2004. She now looks after £250,000 worth of commission/fee income and handles an annual GWP of £1.5m
She has undertaken technical training, achieving Dip CII in November 2004 and is now progressing towards ACII. She has become proficient in all the main classes and now looks after larger and more complex cases, while developing a specialism in professional indemnity insurance, particularly solicitors, and playing an active part in the acquisition of new business.
Best’s talents have been recognised within the industry and she won the Biba Yorkshire and Northern Region Young Broker of the Year Award in 2005.
Outside work her achievements have been extraordinary – she has been appointed national chairman of the Junior Chamber of Commerce for 2009, which will involve conferences and networking on a worldwide basis.
Best is also on the fund-raising board of the South Yorkshire Community Foundation and thus represents the company in fulfilling its corporate social responsibilities within the local community. ‘
Alan Inskip has been responsible for the specification, design and launch of an online service selling ‘pay by the day’ short-term motor insurance for cars and vans.
This was a new product, launched in April 2006, for which there was no market precedent. Inskip set up an office and team to run Temporary Cover, negotiating contracts with several leading companies including Royal & SunAlliance, More Than, the AA, and recently Budget, Westinsure and Compare The Market. Tens of thousands of policies have been sold to date and a further 1,500 brokers have registered to sell the product.
Inskip is responsible for a £500,000 development budget, part of which has been used to run a radio advertising campaign on LBC and Magic FM this year.
He is a member of the CII and is studying for exams to achieve the CII Diploma. The ‘pay by day’ product won an award for e-commerce in 2006 and Inskip was shortlisted for an industry young achiever award this year.
Berkeley Burke Professional Risks
Tim Maxted qualified as a barrister before joining the insurance industry to work in the specialist professional (PI) team of a leading regional broker. Having significantly grown the business, he left in 2002 to found Berkeley Burke Professional Risks, part of the Berkeley Burke Group, and now recognised as a leading PI broker.
Maxted became increasingly involved in the management of the Berkeley Burke Group, culminating in his appointment as group chief executive in July 2007 at the age of 35.
He has built a business and a team. He now leads a group with a brokerage of approximately £10m, employing over 130 staff. In so doing he has won the confidence of, and provided leadership to, the entire group, including those many years his senior. His vision for the future of the group has inspired the staff and delivered profitability for shareholders.
Aon Re Global Fac
Elliot Richardson’s rise in the world of facultative reinsurance has been nothing short of meteoric. Now 35, he began his career in 1988 with Alexander Howden as a US property broker. He and a team shifted from Benfield to Aon in a well-publicised move earlier this year, where he launched Aon Re Global Fac, a unit of Aon Re Global, the world’s largest reinsurance broker.
Elliot runs a team of more than 200, operating out of over 30 offices globally and is seeking to make a significant impact on the sector by focusing on creating and offering integrated facultative, treaty and capital markets solutions.
Personal assistant to new business executive team
Kevin Parkhouse started in Brunsdon’s Bristol office as a personal lines assistant. Progressing to departmental manager, he was responsible for setting up the Biba travel scheme, a major contribution towards £100,000 of travel policy commission generated annually.
Seeking career opportunities, he transferred to the Gloucester head office commercial department where he currently helps to manage annual gross written premium of £2m.
Detailed knowledge of the company’s IT infrastructure has enabled him to instigate a number of systems to enhance customer sales and cross-selling.
Working towards ACII qualification with a view to gaining account executive status, Parkhouse has undertaken First Response training and is a fire marshall for the department.
Overall, he has shown great initiative during his short time with the Brunsdon Group.
Julian Edwards is the heartbeat of MCE’s development with with six sales team managers, three product managers, an
e-trading manager, IT manager and marketing manager all reporting to him.
He has seen MCE grow into a top-three motorcycle broker, with an 11% market share and GWP of £22m. Edwards is MCE’s e-trading visionary, and delivered a market-leading solution boasting the first e-commerce motorcycle insurance website.
He has overseen the launch of two new products, taxi and commercial vehicle insurance, generating a combined £4m GWP.
A passionate family man, with his second daughter due in April, Edwards continues to be an inspiration to MCE’s management team and consistently sets new highs, outperforming competition with innovation and complete dedication.
Assistant vice president
Marsh Private Equity and M&A practice
Mark Lovejoy, 27, works within the private equity and M&A practice of Marsh as a project manager in the transactional risk team. He is responsible for designing, structuring and implementing bespoke insurance solutions to assist Marsh’s private equity clients in dealing with complex M&A issues.
Notably, Lovejoy has been involved in groundbreaking work in Hungary where, as part of a divestment programme, insurance was used for the first time in the jurisdiction as an alternative solution to the provision of an escrow fund.
His work in Hungary has been recognised by the Hungarian Venture Capital Association and he recently presented to its private equity members at a seminar in Budapest.
He has been at Marsh for four years and holds an ACII Diploma in Risk Management.
Edwards enjoys football and rugby in his spare time.
Senior vice president
Marsh Risk Consulting Practice
Stephen Roberts has been with Marsh since 1998 and spent his first three years in insurance broking as a client account manager. In his time at Marsh, Roberts has progressed from a client account manager and business development director, to head of risk consulting for Central and Eastern Europe, a position he achieved at the age of 30. His role involved providing risk consulting services across Central and Eastern Europe and the development of a risk consulting team across 12 different countries. Running parallel to this was the achievement of developing the fastest growing consulting revenues in any emerging market.
Roberts is also deputy head of Marsh’s risk strategies team and is responsible for providing risk assessment and management solutions. He is a regular presenter at international conferences and seminars on enterprise risk management, corporate risk management and environmental liabilities. He is also a keen rugby player.
Davis Corporate Risks
As a technical manager at Davis Corporate Risks, Jane Francis has proven herself to be a very loyal, hard working and personable member of staff. She heads up the Gloucester operation and effectively services a large group of clients ranging from small local businesses to international transport companies.
Francis is highly qualified technically and continues to study. As such, she works closely with the local CII branch; providing training and acting as a student mentor. She is also very active outside of work and has recently completed a month-long sabbatical in Uganda where she worked with and cared for children who had been orphaned through Aids.
Francis is a great advocate for both the company and the industry as a whole. At the age of 31, her efforts have been recognised by her being voted in as the 2008 president of the Cheltenham and Gloucester CII.
Head of Swinton Business
Carolyn Callan is at the helm of Swinton’s latest success story, Swinton Business. Swinton’s dedicated commercial arm is the fastest growing division and accounts for more than £35m premium income. From inception three years ago, Callan’s team now consists of more than 160 people and over the next five years plans are in place to grow the division to £150m gross premium income. Plotting her course, Callan is successfully navigating Swinton Business towards the position of one of the UK’s leading commercial insurance retailers.
Allison Davies has made rapid progress within Willis – as a divisional director, she is the youngest woman in management in her division.
She has worked on highly technical product development, including policies for venture capitalists, employment practices liability and D&O insurance.
Davies has focused on expanding business placed within Lloyd’s, strengthening Anglo-American business relations, and working to improve Lloyd’s visibility on North American accounts.
Over a five-year period she generated significant revenue for Willis, growing book of business more than fivefold.
In addition, Davies penned new policy forms and developed new products helping Willis the 'cutting edge' in winning business. Some were ‘first to market’ initiatives. Her ability to find solutions to difficult and unique risks is recognised by clients and underwriters
Naz Bazeghi’s arrival at Willis in November 2003 coincided with the creation of Willis Commercial, a specialist division dedicated to the UK’s growing SME business. She has been a valuable asset and has played a crucial part in the creation, development and improvement of a dynamic UK-wide sales force.
From identification of a pressing business need, Bazeghi has successfully mentored, developed and united a sales team with very different abilities, resulting in a 600% performance improvement. This level of performance in phone-based sales within a highly competitive market place is truly impressive.
Willis Commercial sales has seen performance levels improve by over 200% in the time that Bazeghi has been part of the team.
Bazeghi has shown a clear focus on success and delivery of agreed objectives. At all times this focus is shown by a passion and enthusiasm for the challenge and opportunities ahead.
Willis mergers & acquisitions practice
Heulwen Samuel launched and rolled out Willis’s M&A regional practice in January this year after identifying requirements in its regional business. She has become an integral part of the European M&A team, responsible for developing regional M&A business with notable success in bringing in new entrants to the investment community.
Samuel is instrumental in developing UK corporate clients’ understanding of Willis’s M&A offering resulting in a 600% increase in referrals to M&A and significant revenue generation. Willis is now recognised as the leading provider of specialist advisory services for financial centres outside London – this is due to Samuel’s determination in delivering real value to clients.
She has pivotal involvement in the design and development of cross-selling initiatives with significant potential income.
Samuel is a member of Willis’s high potential development programme, which identifies and develops business leaders of the future.
She is involved in our client advocate programme, which empowers individuals with the primary responsibility to deliver the value of Willis to clients.
Matthew Collins will play a major part in the developing marketplace. He has developed FMW’s broking, marketing, sales and web presence to make it one of the leading brokers in this field. ‘ ‘ He has recognition within the industry as being one of the leading brokers and has led from the front, preparing the business plan, implementing and entering, presenting and winning awards and reaching the Insurance Times finals in two categories.
Aged 35 and leading the FMW strategic and sales/broking teams Collins is an a innovative, well-respected leader, who has led the sector in dealing with profit shares (it accepts none), development plans (it has 20) and shown the future of insurer and broker relationship management. He has a track record of winning major accounts, and is placed to be a powerful market individual over the next two decades.
Liability expert Thomas Sheffield moved from Chicago to London this September to join Aon. He has already tackled pertinent issues such as the impact of the sub-prime mortgage crisis and the impending Corporate Manslaughter Act to provide advice to clients.
His role includes developing innovative professional liability products and assisting clients in negotiating coverage and addressing exposures on a global basis.
He also brings experience of cases involving securities class actions and has developed various analytical tools to evaluate damages and the legal theories that surround them.
Previously, Sheffield served as counsel for international insurers, representing them in major cover disputes relating to split-capital investment trusts, mutual fund timing, contingent commissions and many other cases.
Sheffield is a qualified solicitor in England and Wales and in the US. He is also a member of the Professional Liability Underwriters Society (Plus), having served as chairman for Plus’s Midwest Chapter in Chicago and currently as secretary of Plus Europe. He has also co-authored chapters for insurance-related treatises on accountants’ liabilities.
General Insurance Brokers UK
Sameer Mirza left school at the age of 19 and started working for a high street motor broker. He went on to complete his CII associateship at 21 and became a fellow at 23.
Mirza started his own business in 1990, initially looking after personal lines insurance but progressed to large commercial cases. His secret is to offer a personalised service to clients where no other broking house can compete.
The company has expanded organically every year.
Senior Group Scheme Underwriter
The A&A Group
The A&A directors are delighted with the progress Finbar Headley has made and by the respect he has earned from staff and insurers.
His dedication and determination has helped him progress from salesman to sales manager of the group’s first venture into insurance on the intern
In November 2007, he was appointed senior group scheme underwriter working closely with Steve McPherson, group sales and marketing director, in progressing the group’s internet and call centre based strategy to agreed underwriting criteria.
McPherson said he was particularly pleased for Headley, who continued to make an invaluable contribution to the group. He added that he was sure Headley had great potential in his current role and would continue to build a successful career with the group in the future.
Matthew Royle has been an integral part of Fehnert for the past three years, and with Royle Insurance in Corby prior to its merger with Fehnerts in 2004.
Royle has always displayed excellent product knowledge and people skills. His innovative ideas on different schemes to get involved in, and his enthusiasm to obtain new business is refreshing to see in an industry that is not overly blessed with such characters as Royle. He will continue to be an essential part of Fehnert’s success for years to come.
Director of client management
Jane Kielty has worked for Aon in Manchester for two years and is director of client management at the age of 31.
She has helped to lead her office through two years of increasing success highlighted by the retention and attraction of some of the North West’s largest businesses. She has achieved this through managing a team of client directors and by ensuring service excellence for clients.
To help inform regional clients about opportunities to protect and grow their business, Kielty instigated and organised a series of events in 2007. These included a seminar on innovation in the insurance market, which was the highlight of the business briefings and also attended by Aon chief executive Peter Harmer.
Sponsored by Roelof Hendriks, chief executive of Aon Europe Middle East and Asia, Kielty’s expertise has been recognised beyond the UK when she recently took part in a project to align Aon’s marketing to clients’ needs across Europe.
Kielty believes that the key to leading Aon into the future is to: listen to what clients want; build the value of the insurance profession in the wider business community; and to do everything possible to grow and foster talent to raise the industry bar.
Her enthusiasm helps to promote these goals in everything she does. She is committed to supporting her profession and home region through her role as 2006/07 regional chairman for Biba.
Ravenhall Risk Solutions
Neil Grimshaw started his career at AC Insurance, Nottingham, in 1996 during work experience at school. He continued to work at AC during holidays and breaks from college. After completing a BA honours degree at the University of Huddersfield, he joined regional broker Rockford Group in Leeds.
After three years full time in the industry, Grimshaw was appointed commercial manager back at AC Insurance in Nottingham. Two years later he founded Ravenhall Risk Solutions in September 2006. Ravenhall now has four staff and places just under £1m GWP.
Grimshaw works with the CII and local careers teams to promote the industry to school and university leavers. Ravenhall is also a ‘friend’ of the Huddersfield Business Generator, an organisation that provides mentorship and
In December 2007 Grimshaw received a judges commendation at the Insurance Times Awards in the category of Young Achiever of the Year.