ABI general insurance council appoints new chair

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Ageas UK chief executive officer Andy Watson has been appointed as the new chair of the general insurance council (GIC) of the Association of British Insurers (ABI).

The GIC sets the ABI’s strategic direction on issues of interest to the general insurance market. Watson will also join the association’s board.

Previously chair of the ABI’s motor committee, Watson succeeds Amanda Blanc, who became chair of the association in June.

Watson has worked in financial services for more than 25 years in a number of senior operational and general management roles. His previous employers include HSBC and Co-operative Insurance. He joined Ageas UK in 2010 and has been leading the business as chief executive officer since January 2013.

Watson commented: “I am delighted to accept the offer to succeed Amanda as chair of the general insurance council and build on her good work.”

“Insurance will always be a cornerstone of any efficient, advanced economy; nevertheless our industry faces many challenges—from technology, from regulation from rapidly changing customer behaviours and expectations amongst many others. It is up to us to decide how best to address these issues so everyone, and especially the customer, benefit from the service we provide.”

Huw Evans, director general of the ABI, said: “I’m very pleased that Andy Watson has become chair of the GIC and will join the ABI board. This is an important time in general insurance, with Brexit negotiations reaching a critical point, key legislation going through Parliament to reform personal injury compensation and responding to challenges posed by terrorism and the impact of Grenfell. It is also a time where building trust and reputation in insurance have never been more important.”

“Andy’s experience and expertise makes him ideally suited to helping the industry respond to the challenging environment the UK’s general insurers face in the months and years ahead, working with colleagues across the market to present a strong and unified industry position to Government and regulators in the best interests of our markets and 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 mark.dugdale@barkerbrooks.co.uk