Lightyear backs its ‘prize asset’: Ed
(Continued from page 1) He exited retail business
completely and sold off various smaller
operations. This left the company focused on
wholesale insurance and reinsurance business.
He also, at last year’s Rendez-Vous, rebranded
the company from Cooper Gay to Ed.
Since the relaunch in September 2016, the
company has been busy delivering the business
plan agreed with Lightyear. In the past 12
months, Hearn said, the company has hired
105 new people, many from its rivals, and
poached “a fair number” of new clients.
“There were a few titters about the name
change; there is less of that now,” he said.
Sullivan said he was pleased with Ed’s
progress although, if anything, its development
had not been fast enough.
“One of our frustrations has been the concept
of ‘gardening leave’ in the London Market. We
would rather people could join more quickly.
There are a lot of well-trimmed roses and lawns
but we want to get on with things.”
Sullivan said Ed is benefiting from a
sentiment in the market that a new type of
broker is needed.
“The insurance community wants that
broad-based, global distribution from a broker
that can also be nimble and provider real
solutions quickly. And everyone wants more
choice—they don’t like having all their eggs in
Hearn added that when he is recruiting, it
is important to him that the person wants a
change. Second, it is important that they are
willing to operate in a way that will be new to
them and different from what they have done
in the past.
Also in terms of recruitment, he admitted
that a frustration during the past year has been
establishing a presence on Bermuda. Despite
going after several teams and individuals and
also examining some potential acquisitions on
the Island, nothing has come to fruition.
“We are now looking at sending someone
on secondment there and building a team
organically,” he said. “It is important to us to
have a credible presence in that market.”
Hearn stressed that, although global, Ed is truly
interconnected in everything it does, ensuring
every member of staff is incentivised to find
From left: Kieran Angelini-Hurll, Martin Sullivan, and Steve Hearn
“Insurers and brokers will remain central to the process of
the right solution for a client regardless of
geography or which market the client or broker
happens to be in.
“We have a single reporting system, a single
incentive scheme and a single P/L that operates
on a global basis. We are truly agnostic as to
where business is placed,” he said.
“The biggest brokers are too big and
complex in their structures to achieve that. The
smaller players don’t have our reach. This is
completely different from anything most new
recruits will have experienced before.”
The broker has launched a new technology
platform called TradEd, which also exists as
an app, which connects the whole company
and allows staff to quote and bind business
globally for any class of business. This level of
interconnectivity and simplification of systems
would be impossible for bigger players to roll
out, Hearn suggested.
Kieran Angelini-Hurll, the chief executive
of Ed’s reinsurance division who joined from
Willis Re in 2016, added that he joined the
company because he feels he can get things
done at Ed—not always the case in other
companies he had worked in.
“We believe clients want a full broking
service—we are an independent, global broker
that can offer it in a way that is unique. It is a
question of matching the risk with the capital,
wherever that is.
“The new technology platform we have
is also a real innovation that will take cost
out of the business. That is a very different
conversation to have with clients,” he said
Hearn revealed to Monte Carlo Today that the
company has been working with the non-auto
technology division of the McLaren Group to
explore ways in which the two businesses could
“Their ability to manage and process data is
incredible; this industry has a lot of data and is
not very good at using it,” Hearn said.
“They like working with companies that are
disruptive within their sector, which we feel we
are. We believe they could stretch our thinking
in terms of what is possible in risk transfer.
“The industry will benefit from an external
stimulant such as that, although we still
believe that insurers and brokers will remain
central to the process of innovation within this
4 | MONTE CARLO TODAY | DAY 4: Wednesday September 13 2017
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innovation within this industry.”