Insurance Australia Group (IAG) managing director and CEO Nick Hawkins is the new president of the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA), replacing QBE Australia-Pacific CEO Sue Houghton when she completes her term at the end of the year.
Hawkins is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Australia & New Zealand and a graduate of the Harvard Advanced Management Program. He became IAG’s managing director and CEO in November 2020.
Previously, Hawkins served as the deputy CEO in the same company, responsible for the management and performance of its day-to-day operations. He also spent 12 years as the insurer’s chief financial officer, responsible for the financial affairs of the company. Hawkins also served as the CEO of IAG New Zealand and has held several roles within finance and asset management since joining the group in 2001. Before joining the insurer, he was a partner with KPMG.
Commenting on his new role, Hawkins said: “Insurers have a unique role to play in this country to help reduce the risks many communities and businesses face from extreme weather and natural disasters, and this will be a key focus of the ICA board as we head into 2022.”
Announced at the December meeting, the ICA confirmed that Houghton will remain on its board despite stepping down from her role. Hawkins will commence as president on January 01, 2022, and Hollard Holdings managing director Richard Enthoven will continue as deputy president.
Commenting on her experience as the ICA president, Houghton said she was proud of the way the industry responded to the challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, individually and collectively through the ICA.
One of the ICA’s achievements this year includes its new Business Advisory Council (BAC), which aims to find solutions for the issues impacting affordability and availability of commercial insurance for the small- and medium-sized business sector in the country.
“Over the past two years, insurers and the ICA have had to grapple with many significant issues, including the implementation of the Hayne Royal Commission reforms, the local impacts of a hardening global insurance market, and the business interruption test case process, just to name a few,” Houghton said.
“I have very much enjoyed my term as [the] president of the ICA board and know that in Nick, I am handing the role on to very experienced hands.”
Hawkins added: “Sue has done an outstanding job as president, and we’re grateful for her leadership. I look forward to stepping into this important role in the new year.”