2017 Judges

Branko Bjelobaba FCII

Branko Bjelobaba FCII

Founder, Branko Ltd

Branko has wide experience in the general insurance industry and has worked across the sector – for two insurers (GA and Pinnacle), a broker (Oriel), a firm of accountants (PwC) and a regulator (GISC). In 2003 he formed Branko Ltd, an approved BIBA and AMII compliance provider. Branko has been an FCII since 1994 and holds Chartered status. He served as Vice President of the Chartered Insurance Institute from 2008 to 2014 and is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Insurers.

 

Melissa Collett

Melissa Collett

Director, Fairer Finance

Melissa heads up Fairer Finance’s complaints services, working with companies to improve their complaint handling and minimize costly disputes. She also advises companies on how to provide clearer communications and enhance the customer journey. Prior to joining Fairer Finance, Melissa was Senior Ombudsman at the Financial Ombudsman Service, with over 11 years’ experience in handling consumer disputes, making over 1,500 legally-binding ombudsman decisions. She was responsible for developing many of FOS’s approaches to insurance and liaising with the industry on raising standards and reforming insurance practice. Melissa frequently speaks at conferences and events, sits on panels, and writes articles on consumer insurance topics.

Andy Couchman

Andy Couchman

Managing Director, Bank House Communications

Andy is a leading commentator and consultant on health and protection insurance as well as Health Insurance’s technical editor. He is co-chairman of The Protection Review, with Peter Le Beau, and writes regularly on the market. He authors training media, newsletters, business reports and customer literature and has written over a dozen books and industry reports.

Dominic Howard

Dominic Howard

Director, Europe, Best Doctors

Dominic set up the Best Doctors office in the UK in 2006, built a team and is currently the director responsible for new and existing business in Europe.

His background is in Accident and Health insurance and reinsurance, always in the area of business development and marketing. He has worked for companies on both the broking and underwriting sides of the industry, including Lloyd’s.

His career has seen him travel extensively, both in the UK and around the world, including secondments in Hong Kong and the Middle East, with his focus in the last two years being Western Europe.

He is married with two teenage daughters who have contributed to a rapid ageing process. He lives in South East London with his family and a spoilt dog. He loves all sports and his interests include wine, film and theatre.

Peter Le Beau

Peter Le Beau

Managing Director, Le Beau Visage

Peter is one of the best known consultants in life and health insurance protection. He began his career at British and European and in 1981 moved to Swiss Re where he was initially head of underwriting and later became head of UK marketing. He left in 2001 to set up an independent consultancy, Le Beau Visage, which focuses on differentiation in the protection sector. Since starting Le Beau Visage, Peter has regularly co-authored The Protection Review, runs a strategic discussion group called The-Net-Work and in 2005 he and Clive Waller set up the Income Protection Task Force to promote a greater awareness of the value of the product. Peter is a non-executive direct of Fineos, Red Arc and the Health Claims Bureau and is chairman of LegaCare. He has also been a non-executive director of The Exeter and was Health Insurance Daily’s Personality of the Year for 2009.

Steve Payne

Steve Payne

Non-Executive Director , The Exeter

Steve was appointed to the Board of The Exeter as Non-Executive Director int August 2015. He is also chair of the Risk and Compliance Committee, and sits on the Audit Committee, the Investment Committee and the Nomination and Remuneration Committee.

Steve is a qualified Actuary who has held a variety of senior management roles in the Life Assurance industry. These include Managing Director for Protection at Friends Life a FTSE100 company (2011-2014) where he led the integration of the protection businesses of Axa, Friends Provident and Bupa.

Steve was a member of Friends Life’s Group Executive.

Prior to this, he led the Bupa Protection business where he became Chief Executive of the Life Company (2004-2010).

Steve has also worked for two Reassurance businesses which are now known as Scor and Hannover Re, and was Deputy Chief Executive at Revios (UK), the company that became Scor (UK) (2004)

Steve is also a past Chair of ILAG (The Investment and Life Assurance Group), a former member of the ABI Protection Committee, and was twice chair of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries Healthcare Conference.

John Ritchie LLB, FCII,

John Ritchie LLB, FCII,

Chartered Insurer,

John Ritchie is a strategic consultant in the life and disability sector who has led category change and growth through innovation, strategic initiative and operational change in employee benefits segments over more than 30 years.  In 2015 he was honoured by his peers with the Personality of the Year award at the Protection Review annual conference.

In 2009 he created and proposed the business plan that led to the foundation of Ellipse, the digital group risk insurer, for Munich Re Group.  At Munich RE UK he was part of the executive team from 1991 and has worked at executive and CMO/CEO level since then.  In 1993 he led the Munich Re joint venture with Confederation Life that created the Galahad/Merlin platform for group life and disability insurance quotations and policy administration. By 2000 over 50% of all group life and IP in force in the UK was hosted on this platform.   This platform remains the foundation for some of the largest sector leading insurers.

  • Integration of absence management systems with Group Income Protection – Sick Pay Complete @Ellipse
  • Rules led automated underwriting Led partnering relationship with Allfinanz that resulted in acquisition by Munich Re Group (now Munich Re Automated Solutions)
  • Automated underwriting – at SJP in 2003 separated protection advice and sales from medical disclosure using Friends Provident’s pioneering online proposal process.
  • More than a cheque – 1999/2000 at Swiss Life UK proposed and executed the product change program that added care planning from Red Arc to Group Critical Illness and bereavement support from Winston’s Wish to Group Life – firsts in the group risk sector that are now hygiene factors.

Chief Executive, Ellipse (Munich Re Group) Apr 2008 – Aug 2016

Head of Group and Client Marketing at Munich Re UK Life Branch Sep 2004 – Mar 2008

Executive Director, Protection and Mortgages at St James’s Place Jan 2003 – Jul 2004

Director, Sales and Marketing at Swiss Life UK Employee Benefits Apr 1998 – Dec 2002

Head of Marketing and Group Risk, Munich Re UK Life Branch Apr 1983 – Mar 1998

Team Leader, Provident Mutual Sep 1981 – Mar 1983

Trustee and director, Winston’s Wish Oct 2003 – April 2008

7 Families Apr 2014 to Sep 2016 Member of sponsor steering group.  Campaign to raise public awareness of financial impact of long term illness.

Ron Wheatcroft

Ron Wheatcroft

Technical Manager, Swiss Re

Ron is technical manager for Swiss Re Europe in the UK and Ireland. He works closely with product providers, looking at how regulatory and legislative change will impact on their businesses. He is a principal author of Swiss Re’s series of insurance reports and of its annual market analyses, Group Watch and Term & Health Watch and leads Swiss Re’s work with Government on reforms to the welfare system and the role for insurance. Ron is a board member and past chairman of the Investment and Life Assurance Group (ILAG). He is also a member of the GRiD (Group Risk Development) Regulations and Growing the Market Committees and the ABI’s Social Care Working Party.

He is a past Examiner and an author for the Chartered Insurance Institute and a regular contributor of articles and comment to the media on topical issues.