Aviva and Intact changes will not affect brokers says BABC

Published: January 19, 2018

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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The Canadian insurance market is going through some changes. The two largest insurance P&C providers on the market have recently announced executive changes at the highest level. However, despite changing the faces of their companies, brokers are unlikely to be affected.

In December, Intact Insurance, Canada’s largest P&C announced then-president Jean-François Blais was retiring. Earlier this month, Aviva Canada revealed Greg Somerville is stepping down as CEO and will be replaced by Colm Holmes, but will remain with the company in a non-executive capacity.

Despite these big changes, “Day-to-day, there is not usually any immediate impact” to brokers when major executive level changes are made. That’s according to Chuck Byrne, executive director of the Insurance Brokers Association of British Columbia in an interview with Canadian Underwriter.

“But this industry is a people business,” Byrne told Canadian Underwriter. “It’s about relationships. Any broker-facing insurer staff, and especially top executives, definitely make a difference in the relationships.”

Louis Gagnon has now become leader of Canadian operations for Intact Insurance.

“When you are looking at long-term talent, especially the quality of people like Jean-François Blais and Greg Somerville, they grow to become a very important face of the company to broker partners throughout the system,” Byrne said.