Meet Camelot Expert…Pete King, previously Managing Director, Central and Eastern Europe for AIG and now Chief Financial Officer for Press Room and Managing Director of Balkan Xchange. Pete has 20+ years’ experience in the insurance industry, holding various leadership positions
Read below to find out more!
What is your role now since leaving corporate life?
Balkan Xchange – working with companies to develop their proposition for entering new markets and helping them understand global risks.
Are you a leader or a member of a Camelot Think Tank?
I am a member of the Sustainability Think Tank. It’s interesting to look at it from an insurance perspective. I mentor some sustainable startups - understanding how people are thinking about this topic in different ways really inspires me and makes me realise insurance still has some way to go.
Areas of expertise?
Global Insurance Programmes
Entering new markets
Highest/proudest/most recognizable previous role?
Managing Director, Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) at AIG.
How long have you been doing this subject/area?
I have 20 years insurance experience, and I have been entering new markets with new strategies for 10 years.
Please can you provide some examples of recent projects that you’ve worked on?
I have been working with a Croatian startup on their proposition including, fundraising, developing their strategy to help them scale across the markets, and most importantly their go-to-market strategy.
Insurtech in CEE is a relatively new concept. There is a lack of disruption from tech and there are still tied agents that dominate with traditional insurers and little innovation.
What is your unique selling point?
I have a unique combination of London Market experience combined with expertise in launching propositions across Europe, plus connections and the ability to provide local insight.
Can you name one professional high point from the last 12 months and what made it so good?
I brought someone onboard to help support me - in only six months they have developed exponentially; with no insurance background, they have picked up so much in such a short space of time.
We need to talk about…?
Investment bias - whether it’s female founders or founders in CEE. Gender bias investment is a BIG thing (I have lots of stats - always happy to share and discuss over coffee!) We see that same bias across CEE.
Do you have any words of wisdom?
Live life without regrets - take risks. Short and simple.
Do you have a favourite quote?
Just do it!!
Any professional goals for the upcoming year?
Why are you such an asset to the industry & The Camelot Network?
I took a risk and spent a lot of my time in the Western Balkans and CEE to build out my own network and create connections from the CEE (a region that has a varied view on the UK) to the UK. I want to use that knowledge to create opportunities for others.
Why does your area of expertise need to be spotlighted?
The UK is seen as a world leader in the insurance space - it’s so easy to just focus on business development in the UK, but you could be missing out on opportunities.
We should ask ourselves - how can we make the most out of the UK being a leader in the insurance space? How can we extend and maximise opportunities by thinking outside of the UK?
Most importantly what are 2 or 3 tips or give-aways that you can offer the following types of businesses?
Solution providers to the insurance industries
Qualify the right prospects that fit your solution
Make sure you understand how your solution fits the specific needs of the prospect
Insurance businesses - startup/scale ups
Stay focused on the execution
Keep it simple - don’t over complicate, as successful businesses are those that successfully execute on their strategy
Insurance businesses – established
Make sure you have the right people who really understand innovation
Consider what simple, low-cost tech is out there that could benefit your business. Expensive, large-scale tech projects often do not meet objectives, and can mean lots of effort and money spent without delivery of results.
You may work on your own but collectively we are a network and we are all in this together. Others will have gone through the highs and lows, so don’t be frightened to share your challenges and ask for advice.
Last but not least, how does being a member of The Camelot Network help you/or add value to your business?
It gives me a sense of being part of something. I have learnt so much and I get to experience so many different perspectives - I am thankful to be part of such a wonderful community.
If you’d like to network with our members, register for our next Camelot Connect