Lloyd's broker RK Harrison is to extend its reach into the offshore energy market after capturing a marine energy team from Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT).

The team, which specialises in offshore exploration and production risks, left natural resource broker Agnew Higgins Pickering last month after it merged with JLT to become JLT Agnew Higgins.

Jonathan Smith, Mark Jenner, Sam Martyn, Mark Jones and Matthew Hilsum, who are all widely considered to be leaders in the offshore energy field, are expected

to further enhance RK Harrison's existing port-folio within the energy division.

James Beckett, director of the energy division, told Insurance Times: "Offshore energy is an important part of the overall division and, while we have been making good progress in that particular product line [since the division was set up in January 2003], getting this team moves us forward significantly and increases our potential, particularly in the offshore market."

The Lloyd's broker expects to grow its energy division by 30% to 40%, if not double the business, within the next two to three years, as a result of the team's appointment.

Beckett added: "We want to be the pre-eminent London broker in those specialty lines in which we transact insurance."

He did not discount recruiting more individuals to the division in the next three years.