The London Market is unique within the global insurance landscape in having such a wealth of capital – both financial and intellectual – clustered together. Within the narrow confines of EC3, every company wrestles with the same operational and competitive challenges: regulation; how we improve; how we compare with our rivals; and how we adapt to the fundamental changes sweeping our industry. These issues preoccupy our days. But how many of us think about how these same challenges affect the wider London Market?
That’s a question that probably too few of us have asked, perhaps because we believe that if we take care of our own businesses the market will somehow take care of itself. But the reality is that the success of our businesses are inextricably linked with that of the London Market. That’s certainly the conclusion we’ve come to at Hiscox, which explains our participation in the London Market Group’s (LMG) initiative to find ways to cement our market’s global position in the decades to come.
The London Matters report represents the first comprehensive analysis of the London Market’s position in the international insurance market. As part of that analysis it asked our customers what they thought of us. Some of it makes uncomfortable reading. They think London isn’t an easy place to do business (a frustration shared by many of us who operate in this market); that we don’t always put the client first, or understand their needs particularly well; also that we’re not as innovative as we once were.
So how do we fix these problems, and also ensure we make the most of the big opportunities that the reports highlights are emerging in the fast-growing Asian economies?
This issue is devoted to looking at the London Market’s future. Miguel Ortiz, Managing Director of The Boston Consulting Group’s insurance practice and the principal author of the London Matters report, gives us his perspective on the global industry and what London needs to do to compete in this fast-changing business. Steve Hearn, Willis Group Deputy CEO and the LMG’s Chairman, discusses with me in a video interview the report and his hopes for the London Market’s future. We also hear from Lloyd’s CEO Inga Beale and our own Chief Executive Bronek Masojada about what they see as the task at hand.
I hope you’ll find plenty of thought-provoking ideas in this issue. It’s important that as a market we have an open and frank debate about what is the best business model for London’s future prosperity, because no single actor can bring about the necessary change. We welcome your views, and would particularly like to hear how you think the market should change in a poll we’re running, in which you can tell us which of the six opportunities raised in the London Matters report you think is the most important to help consolidate London’s position.