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UK

Aon in December 2018 released a paper, The Contemporary Drivers of Mental Health, detailing factors driving poor employee mental health in the UK. Debt, separation and bullying are the personal issues of most concern to employers when it comes to employee mental health, according to a poll of employers. Of the 92 employers surveyed, 39 stated that money and debt were their biggest concerns for employee mental health, 27

Aon has identified that many UK employees do not accurately record sickness absence. Published in November 2018, this insight was obtained by conducting group risk market reviews for employers. Group risk insurers require information on who is absent, the reason for their absence, duration, and more information such as prognosis. Aon, through its market review activity, has seen that some employers either do not record their employees’ absences or

AIG in October 2018 received approval from British courts for its European subsidiary, AIG Europe Limited (AEL) to transfer its business into two new entities: American International Group UK Limited (AIG UK), based in London, UK, and AIG Europe SA (AESA) in preparation for Brexit. AESA’s headquarters are in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, and has 21 branches across the European Economic Area and Switzerland. It is led by Christophe Nicolas

AIRINC in October 2018 appointed Joanna Wakeham as General Manager, EMEA, reporting to President & CEO Steve Brink. She will be based in London, U.K. Jo will be responsible for EMEA client relationships and will lead business development activities in the region. Her experience mostly is with relocation management companies. She most recently held the role of senior vice president at BGRS (formerly Brookfield), and previously was Global Client

Willis Towers Watson (WTW) in October 2018 appointed Pamela Thomson-Hall as head of its Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa (CEEMEA) region, which includes more than 40 countries. Based in London, UK, and reporting to Adam Garrard, Head of International, she was also named head of Corporate Risk and Broking (CRB) for the same CEEMEA region. Pamela Thomson-Hall joined WTW in 1999 as General Counsel for the

Young people in Britain face mounting debts and unaffordable living expenses according to new research from Neyber, but employers believe employees are borrowing less this year. The September 2018 study, carried out among 10,000 UK employees, found that 70% of people under the age of 34 need to borrow regularly either to pay their monthly bills or deal with day-to-day living expenses. However, only 77% of employers, down from

New research published by MetLife UK in September 2018 shows nearly two out of three SME bosses worry their staff face a benefits protection gap in comparison with workers at larger firms. The nationwide survey of companies employing between 50 and 300 staff – equivalent to around 34,000 businesses with an annual turnover of £541 billion and employing 3.3 million people – found 63% of bosses worry about a

Alistair Fraser in September 2018 was appointed chief executive officer of the U.K. corporate division of global broker Marsh. Fraser previously was CEO and president director of Marsh Indonesia and a member of Marsh Asia’s executive committee. He succeeds Joe Grogan, who has been named the chairman of Marsh Ireland. He will report to Chris Lay, CEO of Marsh UK & Ireland. Grogan, who will concentrate on Marsh’s Brexit

The UK Group Risk market – even more employees and premiums but, continuing a theme, still too few employer customers purchasing group risk benefits

The UK’s Home Office in August 2018 unveiled a package of briefing packs, posters and leaflets, the “EU Settlement Scheme: employer toolkit” to help staff from the EU to register for a new immigration status that will be legally required after Brexit. An estimated 3.5 million to 3.8 million EU citizens live and work in the UK. Among the employers and groups present at the launch were the British

Conduent, itself a 2017 Xerox spinoff, in May 2018 announced and in August 2018 completed the spin-off of its consulting business formerly known as Buck Consultants. Private equity investment firm H.I.G. Capital acquired Conduent’s human resources consulting and outsourcing businesses in the U.K. and in Canada as well as its U.S. human resources consulting and actuarial business, forming again what once was actuarial firm Buck Consultants. The new-old firm

Financial Analyst – XYZ Benefits Consulting – Open Position EXAMPLE Central London, UK Apply before 15 November 2018 XYZ Benefits Consulting XYZ Benefits Consulting assists employers on occupational pension plans. We provide all services necessary for the design, implementation, and ongoing administration of Defined Contribution and Defined Benefit pension schemes. Our clients are accustomed to relying heavily on our technical expertise to run their plan in a way that

Generali in July 2018 sold Generali Worldwide Insurance Company and Generali Link to Life Company Consolidation Group (LCCG). LCCG is based in London and owns Utmost Wealth Solutions and Reliance Life. Utmost, a provider of international savings, protection and investment solutions into the UK, Continental Europe and Asia, operates from Ireland and the Isle of Man. It manages over £22bn of assets. Reliance Life is a London-based run-off manager

Global broker Gallagher in June 2018 announced that Simon Matson will assume the role of CEO, UK brokerage and underwriting, leading a 4,500 strong team. Matson’s predecessor Grahame “Chily” Chilton will be stepping down later this year. Simon Matson is now head of Gallagher’s London Market and the founder of Alesco. He began his career in 1989 in the oil and gas division of a global insurance broker, eventually

AXA in June 2018 announced it had sold its UK whole-of-market intermediary, The Health Insurance Group (THIG), to U.S. private equity firms Highbridge Principal Strategies and Madison Dearborn Partners. Acquired by AXA in 2008, The Health Insurance Group provides individual and corporate health and well-being products. Highbridge Principal Strategies and Madison Dearborn Partners already own several UK broking brands, including The Ardonagh Group. A “whole of market intermediary” is

Gallagher in May 2018 announced several acquisitions in the United States and England to bolster its retail property/casualty brokerage operations and employee benefits consulting services. Simi Valley, California-based Thomas Costello Insurance Agency is a retail property/casualty broker, and employee benefits consultant and broker, offering commercial and personal coverages to clients primarily across Southern California. Tom Costello and his associates will continue to operate from their current location under the direction of Scott

Marsh in April 2018 announced it has named Chris Lay CEO, U.K. and Ireland, succeeding Mark Weil, who is leaving Marsh, and reporting to Flavio Piccolomini, president of Marsh International. Lay will be based in London and is expected to take up his role this summer. He spent all of his career at Marsh where he held the positions of President & CEO of Marsh Canada; President, Global Captive

The move towards compulsory employer pensions provision (which began in 2012) is nearing its end, while taxation changes, legislation targeting higher earners and new ways of saving are all making the reward space an exciting place to be.

MOVE Guides and Polaris Global Mobility in April 2018 announced that they have come together under a new name and identity–Topia. Over the past six years, MOVE Guide’s Global Mobility Management (GMM) software suite has grown to include all parts of global mobility in a single solution. In the end, relocation comprised only one part of their offering and the name MOVE Guides no longer made sense to many

In a paper published in March 2018, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), the UK’s anti-trust authority, has raised concerns about the level and nature of information provided by consultants and fiduciary managers, indicating that investment consultants and fiduciary managers are not clear enough about fees and performance, which suggests a lack of effective competition. The findings echoed those of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which initially referred the

Lloyds Banking Group, the parent of Scottish Widows, in October 2017 announced a deal wherein it will buy Zurich UK’s workplace pensions and savings business in Q1 of 2018. The combined deal would place Scottish Widows as the UK’s third largest workplace savings provider. Zurich will get exclusive distribution rights for group life protection to certain corporate clients of Lloyds’ commercial banking business, while broadening Scottish Widows’ offering in

Employee benefit consultants (EBCs) are forecasting market growth for the United Kingdom, despite concerns about major challenges from newly-introduced data regulations and the impact of Brexit. New research* published in November 2017 by MetLife Employee Benefits shows that more than two out of five consultants (42%) expect their businesses to grow over the next year and another 41% believe they will, at the very least, stand still. Just 13%

Lockton in November 2017 added six new hires to its U.K. domestic and global employee benefits teams. Michael Gillan joins Lockton as Associate Benefits Consultant. Michael joins Lockton from Ombudsman Services where he worked as Investigation Officer. Prior to this, Michael spent four years as Group Risk Scheme Underwriter at Friends Life/Aviva. Michael joins the Manchester team to add additional risk expertise to Lockton’s growing portfolio of SME clients.

10 years ago, a number of group protection providers in the U.K. approached the ORC International research company and asked, “Can you help us understand how advisers feel about the proposition, service and support we provide?” Or something along those lines! 10 years on from the conversation that took place between seven of the leading group protection providers and ORC International back in 2007, the annual, syndicated “Group Protection Monitor” is still going strong.

Aon in October 2017 announced it had purchased Portus Consulting, an independent U.K.-based employee benefits firm. Portus has a leading position in the U.K. professional services market, particularly the legal sector and among SMEs with 50 to 750 employees. It will join Aon Employee Benefits, which says it has 2,500 large and SME corporate clients, covering over 1 million lives in the U.K.

New research in the UK from MetLife Employee Benefits shows the number of British workers who value their employee benefits has surged to 55% in the past two years, but employers need to work harder to increase trust among their employees. MetLife’s research shows that rising uncertainty in the job market and the wider economy is increasing employees’ interest in benefits: 55% of employees now say they value their

International insurance brokerage and risk management services firm Arthur J. Gallagher in June 2017 announced the acquisition of Total Reward Group in Kent, England. Founded in 2005, Total Reward Group is a U.K. consultancy offering remuneration support, executive search, interim placement and corporate training for reward professionals throughout the world. Based in Kent, its consultants work with global brands, mid-size firms, public and third sector organizations across a range