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Archived stories from 2013

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Exclusive: Sir Nobby nails industry issues

The industry press is awash with surveys that detail the hopes and fears of insurance CEOs everywhere. Here at RISKbitz, we can't be bothered to speak to hundreds of CEOs around the world running up a huge phone bill. Instead, we turned to the reinsurance everyman, Mocha Re's man for all renewal seasons, chief executive Sir Norbert "Nobby" Johnson. In this exclusive interview, The Nobster gives a piece of his mind to RISKbitz's answer to Jeremy Paxman, Bart Hogroy.

The Nobster

BH: Sir Norbert, Mocha Re has a massive advertising budget. What would you like me to ask you?
NJ: You could start by asking me about the biggest challenges face by the insurance industry

BH: Certainly your royal highness. What are the biggest challenges faced by the insurance industry?
NJ: Low interest rates. No-one is interested in insurance, let alone reinsurance. I was only saying to the current Lady Johnson the other day, ?when was the last time you expressed any interest in our share price'?

BH: Are investor relations an issue?
NJ: A number of my relations are investors in Mocha Re and frankly they are very disappointed. Some of them have not sent me a Christmas card for years despite a series of sizeable share buybacks.

BH: Regulatory risk is another issue often raised by your peers
NJ: I agree that there is always a risk of one being found out, what with these chaps sneaking around all over the place, asking awkward questions. You'd think they have enough to do with our banking friends, who're always making a hash of things I'm pleased to say.

BH: EIOPA has issued new guidelines around the use of models. Are you relaxed about that?
NJ: I'm a good deal more relaxed about it than my wife is. As an ex-model whose glory days are but a distant memory she took a dim view of the appointment of Trixie Hornbag, former bunnygirl, to be my PA's PA.

BH: Lack of talent is seen to be a problem in the business. As is the glass ceiling.
NJ: There is no lack of talent at Mocha Re following the appointment of Ms Hornbag I can tell you and it is untrue that I have had a glass ceiling fitted in my office. It is a mirrored ceiling.

BH: How will Mocha Re grow its business in 2013? Organically or through acquisitions?
NJ: We hired a consultant to advise on strategic options and after pacing up and down in my office for a bit he came up with a strategic vision or ?manifesto' he called Blue Sky Dreaming: Pipelines Tapping Premium Nirvhana.

BH: And?
NJ: He identified hitherto untapped emerging markets for us to exploit such as North Korea, San Marino and Wales. He also suggested developing niches like payment protection insurance now that the banks have moved out of it.

BH: Are there any Blacks Swans on you horizon?
NJ: Ms Hornbag tells me that confit of duck is on the menu in the executive dining room and lunchtime is as far as my horizon extends old boy! Will you join me?

Other news from Mar 2013
Travelating the Wave of Insurability
the serious stuff
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