Conference speakers

  • Kate Forbes MSPKate Forbes MSP
    Minister for Public Finance and Digital Economy

Kate Forbes was appointed Minister for Public Finance and Digital Economy in June 2018 and has served as SNP MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch since May 2016. She has spent much of her political career campaigning for the interests of the Highlands and Islands regions of Scotland, focussing on infrastructure investment in transport and connectivity. She is a vocal advocate for reducing the gender pay gap in the Highlands and the building of affordable housing. A critic of Brexit, Forbes has raised concerns about the impact it will have on the forecasting of tax revenues. From a background in finance, before being elected to the Scottish Parliament, Forbes worked as an accountant at Barclays. She read History at Selwyn College, Cambridge and completed an MSc in Diaspora and Migration History at the University of Edinburgh.

An Innovation Round-Up

  • Renaud MillionRenaud Million
    CEO, Spixii

Renaud Million is the co-founder and CEO of Spixii, an award winning InsurTech company dedicated to helping more people get better protected through an automated technology. After studying engineering at Arts et Métiers ParisTech, Renaud moved to England and finished his education with an MSc in Operational Research & Management Sciences at Lancaster University. He proceeded to serve EY London for six years, consulting insurance companies and building risk models while training for the British actuarial profession. Passionate about transforming the insurance industry, the move to start Spixii was a natural fit. Renaud was named Young Actuarial Professional of the year 2017 by Insurance ERM.

  • Martin McLachlanMartin McLachlan
    Managing Director, Polaris UK

Martin McLachlan is the Managing Director of Polaris UK Limited; he also sits on the BIBA Innovation Group. Polaris is an insurer and broker-owned body that’s dedicated to setting the standard for the changing needs of the UK general insurance industry.  It develops
e-trading standards using Good Customer Outcomes as the benchmark for its work.  The Standards are used by insurers, brokers, insurtechs and software houses.  Polaris also provides products and services that support the implementation of these Standards – the ProductWriter Suite and imarket.

  • Ian GrayIain Gray
    Group Finance Director, Broker Direct

Iain is co-founder and Group Finance Director at Broker Direct Plc. Owned in the majority by a community of 700 UK brokers, the company is dedicated to supporting the broker as the trusted advisor to their clients. Iain is also co-founder and Chairman of BDElite Ltd, providing best in class motor claims management services to the clients of over 350 brokers across the UK. A big believer in the need to keep the broker relevant in our increasingly digitalised world, Iain joined the BIBA Innovation Working Group focusing on technology-led initiatives that will assist provincial brokers to adapt and compete.

  • Andy ThornleyAndy Thornley
    Head of Corporate Affairs, BIBA

Andy started his career in the public sector, working in the NHS and the Department for Health. He began working in the insurance industry with the Motor Insurers’ Bureau, responsible for communications on industry databases as well as media handling of wider uninsured driving issues, before moving to the British Insurance Brokers’ Association in 2013. Andy is Head of Corporate Affairs and takes responsibility for public affairs helping to develop policy and represent brokers and their interests especially with government officials and Parliamentarians. He is also BIBA’s lead on innovation and InsurTech.

New Age Terrorism requires new insurance coverages

  • Steve Coates
    Chief Underwriting Officer, Pool Re

As Chief Underwriting Officer and member of the Executive Management team, Steve Coates has responsibility for all aspects of underwriting and claims. Prior to this, Steve spent 12 years at Allianz UK, latterly as Head of UK Property and Casualty.

Regulatory Update

  • David SparkesDavid Sparkes ACII
    Head of Compliance & Training, BIBA

David has over 34 years of experience in the insurance industry and since 2002 has focused on insurance broking compliance. During that time David led a group’s firms through authorisation, as well as providing technical compliance advice to a number of firms, from the international to the very small, on UK regulations.

David is able to bring a ‘regulatory mindset’ to his role at BIBA (which he took up in August 2013) having spent a number of years at the Financial Services Authority where he focused on insurance broker supervision.

  • michael sicsicMichael Sicsic
    Head of Retail General Insurance & Protection, FCA

Michael Sicsic took up his position at the FCA as Head of Department from September 2015. Michael joined from Aviva where he spent 5 years, initially as Chief Compliance Officer for the European region, in charge of regulatory affairs, financial crime and operational risk and then Global Operational Risk Director for Aviva Group. He has also held the position of Chairman of ORIC International, a not-for-profit organisation that facilitates the exchange of risk intelligence between insurers. He is still an independent non-executive director of ORIC International. Prior to Aviva, Michael spent over 11 years with GE Capital where his last position was Enterprise Risk Management & Capital Allocation Director for EMEA Region.
Michael has over 20 years’ experience working in financial services globally in a variety of risk management areas. He is a regular speaker at international conferences and industry panels and is also a visiting lecturer at the University Paris-Dauphine in France and Tunisia, for the Master in Actuarial Sciences.