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Friends Life axes chief underwriter role

Friends Life 480

Friends Life chief underwriter and head of claims Mike Taylor is leaving the provider after it scrapped his role as part of its cost-cutting drive.

Money Marketing understands Taylor will leave his position in the new year.

Taylor joined Axa as chief underwriter in 2005 before becoming chief underwriter for the combined Axa, Bupa and Friends Provident business in October 2010. Before joining Axa he spent 11 years at Zurich, where he was an underwriter and then underwriting manager.

Earlier this month Money Marketing revealed the insurer plans to make 150 staff redundant and has scrapped plans to fill 50 job vacancies. It currently has around 3,800 staff.

In November last year Friends announced plans to outsource the IT and customer service functions for its heritage business to Diligenta, with 1,900 jobs moving across to the outsourcing specialist.

This month, Friends Life parent Resolution announced plans to ditch its externally advised operating structure to protect the company’s premium listing on the London Stock Exchange. It will merge the boards of Resolution Operations LLP and Friends Life by March 2013.

Life Cover for All partner Mike Weedon says: “It is quite concerning that Friends Life has decided to get rid of its chief underwriter. I do not see how you could operate effectively without that role.”

Friends Life refused to comment.


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There are 6 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Not the first and definately will not be the last – the fallout from RDR is just starting

  2. Not sure what the relevance of RDR is?

  3. In a company full of underwriters one less makes no difference – some one with a different title does the job. Its the same with any role…

  4. The issue here is more about how the management from one company (ex AXA Sun Life) in this case are severely disadvantaged when a number of companies are merged together and whoever gets the top job surrounds themselves with colleagues or ex colleagues from their company and as a result others lose their jobs. All very sad that this is allowed to happen.

  5. It’s not just the management that is ‘disadvantaged’. All of Friends Provident’s underwriters have been ‘allowed to leave’.

  6. Very sorry to hear about Friends Provident underwriters and sad to see the staff from such a good company being treated in this way. Just shows you what can happen when two good companies (part of AXA Sun Life and FP) with lots of excellent staff are taken over by an organisation purely interested in cutting costs regardless of affects on customer service and staff morale. Not the first time this has happened in our industry and surely not the last.

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