Norwich-based Validus eyes new insurance markets

Chief Executive Mike Srokowski of insurance-related business Validus.

Chief Executive Mike Srokowski of insurance-related business Validus. - Credit: Archant © 2010

The boss of a Norwich-based claims investigation firm is looking to recruit top-level managers with an expert knowledge of the insurance sector to establish the business in new markets.

Mike Srokowski, chief executive officer of Validus-IVC, said the company was broadening its footprint and targeting household and pet insurance by adapting the software its uses to settle disputes with motor insurance claims.

It comes after Validus-IVC pushed forward with its growth ambitions last week when it became subject of a management buyout driven by a £12m cash-injection from the Lloyds Development Capital.

The move saw the EDP Future 50 company make dramatic changes to its management operation with Validus chairman Philip Easter, and James Duez and Gary Steward from the executive team, being replaced by Paul Hewitt as chairman – while Paul Figgins from LDC joins the board as a non-executive director.

Mr Srokowski, whose company recorded a £6.9m turnover last year and employs about 150 people at its base on Princes Street, said the firm had also been boosted by a new product that allows clients to use the Validus system inhouse via cloud computing – rather than outsourcing its claims disputes.

He said: 'The reason we went through with the buyout is because we felt we wanted to move in the wider market for claims, and in order to do that we needed a bigger partner.

'There has been a huge amount of interest in Validus-IVC from private equity firms over the last couple of years and we have picked a partner now who can deliver.

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'What some insurers have wanted to do is to get the Validus effect, not externally, but to do it themselves. We have developed a new product to use our system via the internet and cloud computing.

'That way their own claims handlers can analyse their own claims using our software.

'But we have noticed in the last year or so that there are a lot of areas that our products can be used with like pet insurance claims and household claims.

'The investment will bring the resource we need to make new developments and bring new expertise into the business. That could mean taking on more experts at the management level, but what we have done is put the building blocks in place.'