Townend becomes MD of UK general insurance at Aviva


Aviva has appointed Rob Townend as managing director of UK general insurance.

Towend (pictured), who was previously UK claims director, takes over from Colm Holmes, who will become president and CEO of Aviva Canada.

Holmes will also continue to lead Aviva’s global corporate and specialty business.

Greg Somerville, meanwhile, is stepping back from his role as president and CEO of Aviva Canada to become a non-executive director of the business.

In his new role, Towend will report to Andy Briggs, Aviva UK insurance CEO. He will focus on driving continued excellence in general insurance, particularly in product design, pricing, claims and underwriting.

Elsewhere, Phil Bayles will continue in his role as managing director of UK intermediaries, taking on the additional responsibility for leading the trading strategy.

Townend and Bayles will work closely together to drive profitable growth for the general insurance business to maintain a strong market presence.

Patrick Tiernan, currently Aviva CFO of global corporate and specialty, will move to the new role of managing director of global corporate and specialty for the UK and Europe.

Leading this growing global business in the UK and Europe, he will focus on large general insurance corporate and specialty risk clients.

Andrew Morrish, currently Aviva’s UK motor claims and technology director, will move to the role of UK general insurance claims director.

Briggs said of the restructuring: “Under Colm’s leadership, Aviva’s UK general insurance has gone from strength to strength. He has been responsible for driving strong growth in both revenue and profit, as well as achieving high customer satisfaction and developing new insurance products that help our customers manage the risks of everyday life.”

“These appointments reflect the quality and depth of our management team across Aviva. I’d like to thank Colm for his contribution to our UK business, and I look forward to continuing to evolve and simplify our UK business around the changing needs of our customers.”


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Mark Dugdale is the editor of Claims Media. Mark welcomes articles, letters or feedback from readers and can be reached via