Insurance Age: GS Group names Kevin Nicol as new MD

We’re delighted to announce that Kevin Nicol has been named as our new MD, as highlighted on Insurance Age today:

Scottish broker’s founder George Stubbs moves into chairman role.

Kevin Nicol has been appointed as managing director of GS Group, Insurance Age can reveal.

Nicol, who was most recently head of Marsh Scotland, took over the job from the broker’s founder George Stubbs, who has stepped into the position of chairman.

Nicol explained that his responsibilities would be to run the day-to-day activities of the business from the head office in Perth, while Stubbs would move into more of a strategic role.

“George is very much still involved but he wants to take a step back from some of the operational side of things,” Nicol told Insurance Age.

He added: “I will certainly be speaking to him on a daily basis, but he’s keen to get some separation away from the day-to-day people part of the business. This is something I enjoy so it’s a good fit.”

Nicol joined Marsh in 2004 and later took over the Glasgow branch before becoming head of Marsh Scotland.

He noted that his aim for GS Group was to get the right structure to grow the business.

Stubbs has previously revealed a plan to double the size of GS Group over the next five years, and Nicol added that the broker has already invested in a number of people joining the business over the last twelve months.

“I’m a big believer in leading from the front and trying to get the best out of people that I work with,” the new MD continued.

“That’s where I’ve had success in the past. I get a buzz out of helping people and seeing them develop so that’s a big part of trying to bring some of these people on and make them realise their potential.”

He added that making the necessary changes to the broker’s structure would be a challenge, but described it as an “evolution not a revolution”, highlighting that nothing would change overnight.

According to Nicol the Scottish broker is also looking to develop new niche products, including in the corporate space where the firm has previously not been very active.

GS Group currently has five offices in Scotland – Perth, Dundee, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Falkirk – and Nicol highlighted that he will take the business south of the border “in some shape or form” in the next few years.

He explained that while there were no set plans yet, he saw a “massive opportunity” to target the north of England.

“There are some gaps there and opportunities around some of the acquisitions that have taken place of late including Hendersons,” he continued.

“Scotland is a very competitive market and I know we can hold our own there but why restrict it just to the Scottish market?”

According to Nicol the independent broker space is a “really interesting environment” following the latest wave of acquisitions in the sector.

He continued: “The multi-national players are probably becoming a bit more androgynous and there’s no doubt that it’s becoming a lot more commoditised in terms of their approach.

“The independent broker space is quite exciting just now – it’s not got the same shackles that the multi-nationals have in terms of their approach to markets.”

Nicol concluded: “It’s really exciting to run a business that’s in growth mode, that’s quite dynamic and can make quick decisions. I’m probably coming in at the perfect time in terms of my career.”

Access the full article on Insurance Age below:

GS Group names Kevin Nicol as new MD

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