Chief executive Colin Bird steps into chairman role

Michael Wade

Michael Wade (pictured) has sold his 15% shareholding in Lloyd’s broker Besso to a group of investors and stepped down as chairman.

Besso’s chief executive Colin Bird will take up the chairman’s role.

Wade bought his 15% stake in Besso and became chairman in April 2011, after banking group Wells Fargo sold its shareholding in the firm.

Following the Wells Fargo sale private equity firm BP Marsh increased its stake in Besso to 34% and BP Marsh’s chairman Brian Marsh bought 11%.

Besso said Wade’s decision followed a strategic review and a successful restructuring of the group.

Bird said: “Michael helped Besso through a restructuring process which has been complex although with a highly successful outcome – I am most grateful to him for his important contribution.”

Wade commented: “It has been enormously interesting to invest in Besso at a time when the group needed to restructure its shareholding base – and also bring in the next generation of business producers as partners.

“It is truly impressive to witness their specialist insurance skills. I look forward to a consulting role with the group although also wish to pursue a new business concept outside Besso which, rightly, should focus upon its core skills.”

Marsh added: “We have worked closely together with Michael during his role as chairman of Besso and would like to thank him for his efforts in working with management and shareholders and returning the company to profit following the exit of Union Hamilton as shareholders.”