Q. What motivates you to get out of bed every morning?
A. I’m very fortunate to work in a fantastic business where every day is different, and I get to work with some great people. So there is no better motivation to get up and get on with the challenges of the day. At weekends, Golf usually does the trick!
Q. You’re obviously a keen Golfer. What’s the best course you’ve played?
A. For years it was always the Old Course at Ballybunnion in Kerry, Ireland but I was lucky enough to play at Turnberry in Ayrshire recently – that was incredible.
Q. What does the Future at Lloyd’s mean for Asta?
A. A fantastic opportunity. Not just for the market to transform, but for Asta to adapt and play our part as we have done over the last two decades. There are big and much needed changes ahead and our relationship with Lloyd’s means we can make a very direct and important contribution to building the future of the market for the next generation. It’s a hugely exciting time for Asta.
Q. Who was your childhood sporting hero?
A. I’m a Liverpool fan so there were many to choose from when I was a young lad, but the stand out player for me was Kevin Keegan. I was privileged to meet him on the golf course recently and only just managed to avoid confessing that he was (and still is) my hero!
Q. What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your career so far?
A.Apart from answering these questions? It has to be taking on the role of CEO at Asta in 2014 – a real privilege, but also a huge responsibility for maintaining our reputation as the leading third-party managing agent. Asta’s reputation continues to grow and I’m immensely proud of what everyone at Asta has achieved over the last five years.
Q. Where do you see Asta in three years’ time?
A. We have a great business model that enables us to face the Future at Lloyd’s with confidence and to also look further afield for new opportunities where our range of expert solutions can create value for a variety of different insurance businesses. I therefore see us being a bigger business that remains committed to Lloyd’s, has diversified in to other areas and maintained its reputation for excellence and first-class service. Most importantly, I expect us to continue taking great satisfaction from the role we’ve played in the ongoing success of our clients.
Q. How’s your cooking?
A. Awful but improving. I can rustle up a decent Roast and the kids have been kind enough to say that my Thai Green Curry tastes less inedible each time I make it.
Q. What’s your all-time favourite film?
A. The Quiet Man starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara. A tale of an Irish-American who, after a tragedy in the boxing ring, returns to his birthplace in Galway. There he starts a tempestuous romance with a local shepherdess whose brother forbids them from having a relationship. So much so that he withholds his sister’s dowry – an issue that was dealt in typically Irish style by a good old fist-fight in the local pub. Perhaps not the typical hallmarks of a “quiet man” but see it for yourself – it’s a cracker for a lazy Sunday afternoon.
Q. Which business do you most admire?
A. Petchey Holdings. Founded by (Sir) Jack Petchey, a very successful businessman and philanthropist who genuinely started with nothing. He left school at 13, served with the Royal Navy in WWII and started a car hire business whose profits he reinvested in what is today a £450m property empire. The one thing I most admire about him is the charitable foundation he created which has so far invested £125m to support young people in London and Essex to work hard and reach their full potential. He’s an example to us all and a personal inspiration to me when he says – “if you think you can, you can!” He is now 93 years old and still working with energy and passion for the foundation.