Senior Management

Meet the Directors and Senior Management team here at Vantage Insurance Services:

John Collyear

John Collyear

Chief Executive Officer

John Collyear

Chief Executive Officer

John has over 38 years’ experience in the insurance industry. He started his career as a Lloyd’s insurance broker in 1978 before being recruited by a Lloyd’s Syndicate in 1982, when his underwriting career began.

In 1989, at the age of 27, he became a director of Castle Underwriting Agency and set up his own syndicate, becoming one of the youngest underwriters at Lloyd’s of London. His specialist areas of insurance are property, collectables (including art and classic cars) and outdoor leisure insurance.

In 1998 he joined Euclidian Underwriting Ltd, where his career in underwriting continued until 2008 when together with James Stuart and other employees he bought what is now Vantage Insurance Services.

James Stuart

James Stuart

Executive Director

James Stuart

Executive Director

James started his career in insurance in 1977 with the Corporations of Lloyd’s before joining Holman Wade in 1982, a Lloyd’s insurance broker. His career in insurance broking took a turn in 1991 when he set up and became a director in SBJ Harrison Stuart Ltd. In 1993 he led a management buyout and purchased a new company called Indemnity Insurance Services Ltd and was joint managing director. This company specialised in alternative risk transfer.
In 1994 he jointly created Euclidian PLC by raising £20 million on the London Stock Market, enabling the company to become one of the first corporate members of Lloyd’s of London underwriting £42 million on various syndicates at Lloyd’s, through a concept he devised of geared reinsurance.
In 2008, together with John Collyear, Tom Cooper and Nigel Coppen he bought what is now Vantage Insurance Services Ltd.

Tom Cooper

Tom Cooper

Chief Operations Officer

Tom Cooper

Chief Operations Officer

Tom started his career in insurance in 1982 with the Corporation of Lloyd’s in their Policy Signing office processing wordings and premiums. In 1986, he joined Carritt and Partners, a Lloyds Broker specialising in the provision of insurance to Members of Lloyds.

In 1994, he assisted in the creation of Euclidian PLC which became one of the first corporate members of Lloyd’s of London. During this period he headed up the IT department who successfully achieved the smooth running of systems throughout the millennium period.

In 2004, he assisted in the management buyout of what is now known as Vantage Insurance Services Ltd. Tom was appointed as Chief Operations Officer in February 2011 and heads up the Broking and Tour Operators teams at Vantage.

In Tom’s down time, he is a proud supporter of Stoke City Football Club. He enjoys a round of golf when in Portugal and watching sport in general.

Nigel Coppen ACII

Nigel Coppen ACII

Retail & Marketing Director

Nigel Coppen ACII

Retail & Marketing Director

Nigel has over 30 years’ experience in the insurance industry. During his career he has worked in general insurance specialising in schemes and niche markets and has also worked in commercial insurance, reinsurance, a Lloyd’s Members Agent, as well as helping to set up and run a mutual.

He was appointed to the Board of Euclidian Direct Limited in 1999, the broking arm of Euclidian Syndicate 1243. EDL became Vantage Insurance Services in 2005. He was appointed Client Director in 2004 and Business Development Director in 2005. As well as developing products and schemes the role includes oversight of sales and marketing.

In his spare time Nigel manages and coaches the local cricket side where his sons play. In addition to cricket he enjoys golf, skiing, tennis and watching rugby. In his downtime he enjoys time with his family as well as good food, good drink and good company. Favourite saying 'Failing to prepare is preparing to fail' - it applies to everything in life!

Chris Ryder Richardson FCII

Chris Ryder Richardson FCII

Head of Underwriting

Chris Ryder Richardson FCII

Head of Underwriting

Throughout his career, Chris has held underwriting positions for a number of Lloyd's syndicates, looking after accounts that included international non-marine reinsurance business, both proportional and excess of loss as well as direct and binding authority business. He was also given the responsibility of a number of high-profile run-off syndicates.

In 2001 Chris joined Euclidian to help grow the existing book and in 2004 formed part of the management buy-out team that created Vantage Insurance.

In his own words, Chris' weekends are spent hacking his way around golf courses with good friends who apply ‘friendly rules’, rushing around tennis courts in an attempt to catch increasingly-fast tennis balls and hoping to finish in the top half of the fleet whilst sailing competitively in his laser dinghy.

Louise Watson

Louise Watson

Financial Controller

Louise Watson

Financial Controller

Stuart Craig

Stuart Craig

Group Marketing Manager

Stuart Craig

Group Marketing Manager

Stuart joined Vantage in 2009 and has spent his working life in the outdoor leisure industry filling media roles including editorship of many of the leading magazines and websites in this sector. He has also occupied a head of marketing role for Lowdham Leisureworld - one of the UK’s largest caravan and motorhome dealers.

Stuart has strong operational experience and had a hands-on role in managing Shield Total Insurance and Crusader Insurance before they were brought into the Vantage group of companies.

A specialist in electronic and interactive marketing with natural ties to offline media and exhibitions, Stuart’s main responsibility is ‘making the phone ring’ or the ‘email buzz’.

Stuart is also a mad football fan (Liverpool), is Director of Football at grassroots football club – Glinton & Northborough FC - and is a scout for Peterborough United. He enjoys travelling having notched up 56 of the world's countries to date.

Clifford Flack

Clifford Flack

Divisional Director

Clifford Flack

Divisional Director

Clifford joined Cork Bays & Fisher in 1978 and over the past 35 years he has been involved with a varied numbers of industry sectors. Over the past 25 years he has been mainly involved with Tour Operator and Travel Agents sector in advising and arranging their travel bonds and commercial insurance needs.

Cliff's client base ranges from large international based companies with turnover well into the £100M’s to new start up and everything in between.

In his spare time Cliff enjoys watching most sports, walking and trying new foods from around the world.

Donna Joyce

Donna Joyce

Sales & Customer Service Manager

Donna Joyce

Sales & Customer Service Manager

Donna has worked at Vantage Insurance Services since November 2011, when she joined as a Team Manager for the caravan team. Previous to this she was a Team Leader for a different broker where she began her insurance career in 1998.

Donna now manages both the caravan and motor teams. The teams consist of 29 staff members selling a total of 9 products.

In her spare time, Donna regularly practices hot yoga which is yoga performed in a heated studio. She also likes to spend time with friends and family and takes a keen interest in tennis and snooker.

Steve Lawrence

Steve Lawrence

Claims Manager

Steve Lawrence

Claims Manager

Steve joined Euclidian Direct Limited in 1999 bringing with him extensive personal lines claims experience and has headed up the claims team since 2001.

Euclidian Direct Limited became Vantage Insurance Services in 2005 and following relocation of our retail branch in 2010 Steve manages our skilled team of claims handlers from our modern offices in Brentwood.
Experience, professionalism and integrity are the watchwords of the claims team and their dedication to providing class leading service has helped the business achieve 5 star Defaqto recognition.

In his spare time, Steve likes military history and all things mechanical.

Akin Oni

Akin Oni

Computing & Info Systems Manager

Akin Oni

Computing & Info Systems Manager

Akin re-joined Vantage Insurance in 2015 as the Computing and Information Systems Manager and is responsible for managing the company’s technical & helpdesk teams. He also oversees procurement of new technology for the company and handles negotiations.

Prior to his appointment, Akin worked in the Insurance sector as a software developer, systems administrator, business analyst and change analyst.

Akin spends his private time reading non-fiction books, listening to music, enjoying film & cinema and socialising with family and friends.

Martin Swann

Martin Swann

Divisional Director

Martin Swann

Divisional Director

Martin Joined Vantage in 2012 to launch the group's Professional & Financial Risks Division having spent the majority of his insurance career specialising in these niche classes of insurance.

During his previous roles within a number of niche London brokers and as part of a specialist team within a large national broker, Martin has developed a strong technical knowledge of Professional & Financial Risks including Global & Multinational placements.

Martin’s primary focus when dealing with clients is to ensure that the insurance placements that are negotiated for their business are coverage led and meet their individual and specific needs.

In his spare time Martin is a keen rugby enthusiast having an involvement as coach, referee and - until 2016 - a player before a neck injury forced him to hang up his boots. Martin is also involved in youth rugby in both his club and local schools. Outside of rugby, Martin’s interests include cycling. golf and Formula 1.

Luke Redpath

Luke Redpath

Business Development Manager

Luke Redpath

Business Development Manager

Luke started at Vantage Insurance Services in early 2010 with 3 years of personal lines insurance experience with a previous broker.

Luke now assists our Business Development Director, Nigel, to ensure that Vantage remains customer focused, innovative and a market leader.

Luke is self-confessed watch enthusiast and enjoys photography, motorsport (particularly Moto GP) and travelling to new places.

Alex Barclay

Alex Barclay

Underwriter

Alex Barclay

Underwriter

Alex joined our underwriting division back in 2012 after being plucked from the company's regional office in 2010, demonstrating an impressive range of skills and industry knowledge in his personal lines experience.

Since November 2015 he has been overseeing the day to day running of the Tour Operators account, including the Crisis Management, Management Liability and Office classes of business.

Alex gained his CII Diploma in 2014 and is now currently working towards his ACII. His hobbies include football (West Ham), skiing, going to the gym and socialising.

Nic Wheele

Nic Wheele

Senior Account Executive

Nic Wheele

Senior Account Executive

Nic joined Vantage in early 2014, having previously worked as a commercial insurance broker for CCV/Towergate and NFU Mutual dealing with a wide range of industries.

Nic now works with our travel and leisure industry clients which include travel agents, tour operators, caravan dealerships & engineers, hotels, restaurants and holiday parks.

Having gained his certificate in insurance, Nic is now working towards the diploma. In his spare time he enjoys playing golf, snowboarding, football and travelling.

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