The Board of the U.K.’s Prudential plc announced that Nick Prettejohn has left his post as CEO of Lloyd’s of London to head the domestic operations of the country’s second largest life insurer. He will replace current U.K. head Mark Wood as of January 1, 2006.
Lloyd’s has so far not commented on Prettejohn’s departure, or on a possible successor. He has been Lloyd’s CEO since 1999, and has been instrumental in steering the London market through some of the most dramatic restructurings in its 300 plus years.
Although the changes began with the introduction of corporate capital in 1994, before he came on board, Prettejohn has overseen the changeover from self-regulation to supervision by the U.K.’s Financial Services Authority; the adoption of a franchise system; the establishment of new processing for back office procedures in partnership with Xchanging; harmonization of wordings and procedures with London’s International Underwriting Association, and the changeover from three year accounting to an annual system – to name a few. He also guided Lloyd’s through Sept. 11, last year’s hurricanes, as well as working on Katrina, and leaves it with a solid balance sheet.
About the only thing that seems to have stymied Prettejohn is the highly visible delay in the deployment of Kinnect, Lloyd’s attempt to bring its brokers and underwriters into the age of the Internet. The London market still handles some $25 billion in premiums, as well as all the claims and related documents by hand, producing on average 4 tons of paper a day. Although he wasn’t the only one responsible for Kinnect’s delays, there were rumors that his failure to get the problem solved may have made his continued tenure as CEO less secure.
Prudential’s Group CEO Mark Tucker commented: “Nick’s background and experience mean that he is well suited to lead our UK Insurance Operations to the next stage in their development. He is widely respected in the industry and across the financial community. He has broad and relevant experience of the financial services market and has a track record of implementing strategic change successfully and will bring a fresh, external perspective to the business. I look forward to working with him at this exciting time for the UK and the Group.” He also thanked Wood for his contributions on behalf of Prudential.
“I am delighted to be joining Prudential at this exciting time in the Group’s development,” Prettejohn stated. “There is huge potential for the business in the UK, and I look forward to working with the Board and the management team to deliver strong, profitable growth.”