22 January 2018

Paul Hughes joins the board as we strengthen our management team

We’re delighted to announce the appointment of Paul Hughes to the newly created boardroom role of Sales and Operations Director.

Paul has joined us from Bollington Insurance Group with whom he spent over four years, first as direct sales director and then wholesale director.

He began his insurance career as a team manager at RAC in 1986 where he worked alongside Principal’s founder and managing director, Dave Bowcock. In 1996 he joined Direct Line and over nearly 20-years with the group and its then parent, RBS Insurance, took on a variety of management positions spanning sales, training, operational and customer service.

Commenting on his new role, he said: “It’s an exciting time to be joining Principal. This is not only a dynamic and fast-growing business, but a rapidly maturing one with an excellent management team which understands that to successfully manage growth you need to reinvest in both talent and technology.”

His appointment is part of a wider strengthening of our executive and senior management teams.

Management promotions

As part of that restructure, the group has promoted Jackie Bircham and Matthew Byrne to new roles.

Matt Byrne, Jackie Bircham and Paul Hughes.

Matt Byrne, Jackie Bircham and Paul Hughes.

Matt, who has been with us since we were founded in 2011, has been promoted to Head of Distribution, reporting to Paul. He will oversee our Products, Pricing and IT departments and have responsibility for day-to-day liaison with insurers, aggregators and technology partners. He previously led our fast-growing commercial insurance operation.

Jackie, who was group operations manager has been appointed as Head of Business Transformation, charged with overseeing the development of new policies and procedures in line with our continued growth.

She will report to HR, Training and Compliance Director Penny Wardale who joined us from Autonet last August.

The management changes have been prompted by an acceleration in our already rapid growth.

We have created nearly 100 new jobs over the past 18 months, with more than 130 staff now employed at our Manchester, Lancaster and Dublin sites. These now serve over 40,000 policyholders across our specialist lines which include classic and high-performance cars, motorcycle, van and home insurance.

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