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London in danger of slipping back in global insurance league table says LMG Chairman

At its best this market provides a unique and unrivalled service to our customers. We provide solutions to their problems in a way that no other insurance centre or capital market can do. We provide help when they most need it. But there is increasing evidence that London’s position in the global industry is slipping. So I want to use the unique cross-market vehicle that LMG is to understand why that is, to understand our customers’ needs better and then do something about the issues we have.

Steve Hearn, Chairman of the London Market Group, today launched LMG’s 2014 agenda. Addressing an audience of senior market figures in the Willis Auditorium, Hearn announced that LMG would be expanding its remit to focus on all issues that affect the competitive position of the London market.

Hearn, who is also Deputy CEO of Willis Group, said: “I am proud to be the new Chairman of the London Market Group. At its best this market provides a unique and unrivalled service to our customers. We provide solutions to their problems in a way that no other insurance centre or capital market can do. We provide help when they most need it. But there is increasing evidence that London’s position in the global industry is slipping. So I want to use the unique cross-market vehicle that LMG is to understand why that is, to understand our customers’ needs better and then do something about the issues we have.

“Whilst we must not lose our focus on operational reform, we need to accept that, although this is very important, it cannot be the whole solution. We need to be talking about the major influences that can sustain or even grow London’s influence in the global marketplace. To do that we need to understand what it is that makes a successful financial centre capable of delivering high quality customer service. And then we need to determine which of those elements we need to improve upon if we are to retain our position. And so I am announcing today that LMG is to expand its remit to ensure it provides this service to the market. We have agreed with the Association Boards enhanced terms of reference to enshrine this and have identified a series of initiatives to take this forward.”

These market wide initiatives will include work to:
• develop talent and promote diversity;
• co-ordinate a common voice for the market in its dealings with Government and regulators; and
• commission research to understand our customers base better and to identify ways to make the London market more attractive to them.
“And let me emphasise that this is not a royal “we”. I will need your ideas; your support; and your contribution if any of this is to go somewhere and deliver the sorts of outcomes I think we need,” added Hearn. “Together, we can get to work and progress the agenda I have outlined. That will result in a London market reinforced in the position where it belongs. The pre-eminent insurance centre in the world. That is a pretty positive story. I hope I can rely on your help as I seek to develop it.”

About Ralph Savage (137 Articles)
Insurance and legal journalist Ralph Savage has written extensively for the financial and professional services sectors, most notably as News Editor of Post Magazine. He ghost writes regularly on behalf of FTSE 250 CEOs, leading counsel and senior professionals including solicitors, insurers, accountants and brokers.

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