New UK commercial lines business model unveiled

RSA Group


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RSA unveils new UK commercial lines business model and creates UK & International chief underwriting role

RSA has announced changes to its commercial lines operation with the creation of two new divisions, as well as the appointment of a chief underwriting officer for its UK & International region.

Effective immediately, RSA’s UK commercial lines business will be split into two distinct units according to customers’ needs, the size and complexity of their insurance risks, and where they operate. This new structure will enable RSA to better serve customers and compete more effectively within its chosen markets, providing our customers and brokers with improved access to decision-makers across our business.

  • Global risk solutions covers global specialty lines including marine and will be headed by managing director, Hayley Robinson (previously RSA global specialty lines director).

  • Commercial risk solutions includes SME, regions, mid-market and delegated business as well as RSA's Motability partnership. Jim Reeve, currently commercial sales and distribution director, will lead this division on an interim basis until a permanent appointment is announced.

Focus on underwriting excellence

In addition, Finlay Smith, UK commercial underwriting and pricing director, has been appointed to the newly created position of chief underwriting officer for UK & International, effective immediately.

This new operation will ensure greater alignment of RSA’s portfolio management and best-in-class product pricing and underwriting across all businesses in the region. The underwriting function will also support the acceleration of RSA’s transformation programme, which aims to modernise processes and make it easier for customers to do business with RSA.

Hayley, Finlay and Jim will report directly into Steve Lewis, RSA’s chief executive officer for UK & International. The appointments are subject to regulatory approval.

Steve Lewis said:

"Our new commercial lines operating model provides a much greater level of clarity and focus around how we go to market and deliver effectively for our customers and brokers, and gives due recognition to their different needs. This enhanced business focus allows us to be more agile and responsive, and ultimately easier to do business with, while providing the best products and services."

He added:

"Underwriting is at the heart of our business. Finlay's promotion to chief underwriting officer is in recognition of the increased importance we place on this discipline as the adoption of enhanced pricing and underwriting practices accelerate in a digital and data-enabled world. I am also delighted to have the opportunity to promote Hayley Robinson to my executive team. She brings a wealth of experience as we look to re-energise and expand our offering in the Global risk solutions space."


Media enquiries

  • Mairi MacDonald, RSA media team - head and shoulders colour photograph

    Mairi MacDonald

    Media relations manager, commercial risk solutions and global risk solutions

    • t: +44 (0) 20 7337 5436
    • m: +44 (0) 7766 247 309

Notes for editors

About RSA Global risk solutions

RSA Global risk solutions provides a full suite of commercial insurance solutions to complex and large clients in the UK and overseas. It includes RSA’s global specialty business, our market-leading marine insurance business, European specialty businesses, Dubai International Financial Centre branch and US MGA. In 2015, GRS wrote c.£900m of gross written premiums.

About RSA Commercial Risk Solutions

RSA Commercial risk solutions offers commercial insurance solutions to small and medium sized UK clients. It includes RSA’s SME, regional and mid-market underwriting business in the UK, our range of delegated business written through UK brokers as well as our insurance partnership with Motability Operations. In 2015 CRS wrote c.£1.4bn of gross written premiums.

About UK & International region

Under the new structure, the UK & International region consists of five distinct businesses: UK personal, Commercial risk solutions, Global risk solutions (which includes RSA’s European branches) and the two separate entities of Ireland and the Middle East. The businesses are headed by MD David Coughlan, interim MD Jim Reeve, MD Hayley Robinson, CEO Ken Norgrove and CEO Lloyd East, respectively. All report to Steve Lewis.


  • Hayley Robinson has significant insurance experience having spent her career working across several disciplines in the UK market and internationally. Hayley was director of global specialty lines at RSA UK for more than two years and previously held the position of underwriting, claims and reinsurance director of RSA’s emerging markets businesses. She joined RSA in 2013 from Aviva where she spent 18 months in the role of chief underwriting officer for personal lines. Prior to that she held leadership positions spanning both underwriting and claims in RSA’s international business.

  • Finlay Smith joined RSA as an underwriting clerk in accident and liability insurance in Edinburgh. Always operating in commercial insurance he gained significant experience across a number of disciplines and regions in the UK before coming to London in 2001 as UK property underwriting manager. Finlay left RSA to join QBE in 2008 to lead and expand their UK and European markets commercial property business across 15 countries before returning to RSA in 2013 as UK commercial underwriting and pricing director.

  • Jim Reeve joined RSA in January 2015 as sales and distribution director for UK commercial. Jim has a track record of leading a range of large financial services organisations. Until April 2004 he was managing director of Zurich Financial Services in the UK before joining Barclays Bank to lead their financial planning business. In 2008 he was appointed CEO of Positive Solutions, the largest IFA business in the UK. More recently he established his own business consultancy practice, advising organisations on their business strategies.