McLarens Focuses on Global Growth Strategy and Expanded Client Services with the Appointment of Graham Smart in new Leadership Role

Steven Wallace to take the lead with UK & Ireland operation

(April 3, 2019) McLarens, a leading, global independent insurance services provider, announced today the appointment of Graham Smart to the newly created global role of Chief Commercial Officer. In this new position, Smart will work closely with McLarens Chief Executive Officer Gary Brown and the firm’s Global Management Team to provide comprehensive leadership of McLarens’ global commercial strategy and expanding service offerings. Smart, who has served as the firm’s Managing Director in the UK and Europe for more than five years, will continue in a significant client service capacity. He will manage relationships with McLarens’ key global clients and will lead the firm’s proposition with blue chip account business (Fortune 500, FTSE 250). As Chief Commercial Officer, Smart will also play an active role in identifying, integrating and anticipating client needs from a holistic perspective. Working with internal business partners in technology and operations, as well as regional and specialty practice leaders around the globe, Smart will drive innovation and the development of expanded product offerings, as well as enhanced technology, systems and processes to meet the needs of the market.

Gary Brown, Chief Executive Officer: “As one of the largest insurance services firms in the world, with an ambitious international growth agenda, we recognise the need to have a leader with a strategic global perspective to focus on comprehensive commercial initiatives. We see a real opportunity to offer our customers an enhanced experience by providing a more seamless, integrated solutions strategy, which includes exploring opportunities to strengthen our traditional core services, as well as pursuing synergies in tangential markets. Graham and I have been discussing this position for years, and as we have ramped-up our strategic growth plan and continue to look for ways to strengthen partnerships with our clients, the timing is right to centralise our leadership efforts in this Global Commercial Officer role. We are fortunate to have someone of Graham’s calibre on our team to take on this opportunity.  He brings significant experience and understanding of the global industry, and is ideally and uniquely suited to lead this effort.”

Graham Smart, Chief Commercial Officer: “The market is undergoing significant change through disruption as technologies and new solutions emerge, yet there is a greater than ever desire for global market-leading loss adjusting and ancillary services. We are extremely well placed to take advantage of the opportunities to broaden our service portfolio and partner with clients in new ways. I am looking forward to working with Gary to set and support our strategic growth plans.”

As Smart assumes his new position, Steven Wallace has been appointed Managing Director, UK & Ireland. In this capacity, Wallace will oversee a network of 18 offices across the UK and Ireland, in addition to driving continued growth in line with McLarens’ strategy of offering comprehensive regional coverage alongside the development of specialist practices. As a member of the UK executive board he has worked closely with Smart in developing the UK business, which has grown tenfold over the past decade, introducing specialist service lines, such as Construction & Engineering, Private Clients and Real Estate. As Executive Director responsible for Ireland, he has also overseen the growth of McLaren’s All-Ireland operation, from the launch of its Belfast office in 2007, to the subsequent opening of new offices in Cork, Derry, Dublin and Galway.

A Chartered Loss Adjuster with three decades of experience handling primarily commercial property and energy claims, Wallace has acted on many high profile major and complex losses during his career, including the 7/7 London Underground suicide bombs. He is also a well-known and respected figure within the profession, having previously served as President of the Belfast Insurance Institute and currently as a member of the UK Council of the Chartered Institute of Loss Adjusters.

Steven Wallace, UK & Ireland Managing Director: “As our UK and Ireland business has evolved, we’ve continually enhanced and refined our proposition, investing heavily in infrastructure, strategic recruitment and building out our specialist practices and, under Graham’s leadership, we have created a strong platform to take the business to the next level.  Given the market consolidation and continued appetite for specialist, practitioner-led adjusting, considerable opportunities exist, and the UK Executive Team is actively working to shape our business for future growth in this hugely exciting time to be taking on the role.  We have a fantastic UK and Ireland team, which I am immensely proud to lead.”

Chris Panes, Chief Operating Officer EMEA region, who joined the business in 2016, will take direct responsibility for McLarens’ European business which, last year, expanded its footprint with the announcement of a tri-partite alliance with two leading European adjusting firms: Polyexpert, a major French adjusting business, and IES, a market leader in Italy, Poland, Romania and Turkey.


McLarens Focuses on Global Growth Strategy and Expanded Client Services with the Appointment of Graham Smart in new Leadership Role

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