Head of Sompo says Brexit will not deter investment in London

Chief executive speaks about how the Brexit vote will affect investment in the City

Insurance News


by Lucy Hook

The chief executive of Japanese insurer Sompo has said that the Brexit vote has not dampened the company’s enthusiasm for investing in London.

Kengo Sakurada told the Financial Times that he would continue to “put more resources and capital into Lloyd’s because it gives us access to other developed markets”.

Alongside its links to overseas markets, he said that London has “so many strengths in terms of licences, information and underwriting expertise.”

Sakurada said that only 4% of Lloyd’s premiums could be affected by the Brexit vote, and he did not see the decision as a reason to move business away from the market.

The CEO’s comments come after the Japanese government warned last week that some of its companies could move their European head-office functions out of the UK if EU laws cease to apply in the wake of a Brexit.

While Sakurada confirmed his commitment to the London market, he also warned against a “hard” Brexit, which he said would be “disastrous”.

Yesterday, Lloyd’s chairman John Nelson highlighted the importance of international business to the market, speaking on BBC’s Today programme.

Nelson said that 85% of capital in Lloyd’s comes from outside of the UK – including 16% from Japan.
Sakurada stressed that future growth in developed markets was also a draw for the insurer.

“By 2025 the insurance market size in developed markets will be 1.6 times larger than it was in 2015,” he said.

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