Japanese insurer plans UK regional network with Manchester and Birmingham offices

Tokio Marine, the Japanese insurer, is gearing up to build a UK regional network after poaching a number of senior staff from CNA, Insurance Times has learned.

The company is understood to have raided the Manchester-based property team of CNA, which includes Peter Ellis, formerly non marine manager and head of the team.

The team is now expected to set up a Tokio Marine branch in Manchester. The insurer is also understood to be setting up a Birmingham branch.

Chris Bottomley, who was CNA's chief underwriting officer for property, is also believed to have left CNA to join Tokio Marine. He is thought to be on gardening leave at present.

The departure of Ellis and Bottomley are two of a number of high-profile departures from CNA in recent months. Andrew Dougall, who was European casualty manager, and Susan Taylor, formerly development manager for property and casualty, have also left the company.

Tokio Marine and Fire Insurance Company, which is Japan's oldest and largest property, casualty and marine insurers, writes a mix of commercial insurance to cover property damage, business interruption, legal liabilities and marine cargo losses.

Headquartered in Tokyo, it has a worldwide network in 41 countries with more than 3,400 employees, working in a total of 35 subsidiaries and affiliated companies forming the Tokio Marine Group.

It merged with Nichido Fire in October 2004 to become Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Company.

Tokio Marine was unavailable for comment.