British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) chief executive Steve White will step down from a role he has held for 10 years in the second half of 2023.
White (pictured, right) confirmed during his speech at the annual BIBA Conference in Manchester today that he will retire when he leaves the association, whose board has formed a sub-committee to determine the process in selecting his replacement.
BIBA’s longest serving chief executive in its 47-year history, White leaves the association in excellent health, both in terms of financial position and governance structure, despite uncertainties and “short-termism” among the UK’s political leadership in dealing with crises during that time.
From the aftermath of the financial crisis in 2008/09 to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and the more recent war in Ukraine, global challenges have not distracted White and the BIBA team from “both sitting down and listening to members and their issues, and then standing up and speaking out on them”.
Crucial to that process are the BIBA manifesto, which is the result of listening to members’ issues on the annual Tour of the Regions, a programme of in-person and face-to-face meetings across the UK that returned in 2022 after hiatus during the pandemic.
The 2023 BIBA manifesto, which focuses on managing risk and delivering stability, calls for a return to an economic growth agenda in the UK that rejects a short-term approach to dealing with crises as they happen and instead projects and delivers certainty.
Rallying BIBA members in the audience to this cause, White said during his speech: “I have never made this job about ‘me’. It has always been about ‘we’. We have never been stronger. We have never been more stable. We have never been better.”
Addressing some of the upcoming challenges facing BIBA and its members, White promised the release of several guides covering topics such as ESG and the cost-of-living crisis, designed to support the industry and its customers.
There is also much work to do with the Financial Conduct Authority and the UK government on regulation and higher taxes, both of which are inflicting unnecessary costs at a time of persistently high inflation.
White went on to urge insurance brokers and intermediaries to embrace technologies such as generative AI as tools that can make them better, whiling calling for the entire industry to do better on diversity.
Commenting on White’s work as chief executive and planned retirement, BIBA chair Jonathan Evans said: “The BIBA board and its members are very grateful to Steve for steering the business steadily and successfully through what has latterly been choppy waters. The board thanks him for the sterling job he has undertaken so enthusiastically over the last 10 years.”