I started my career in 2012 as an intern at Tokio Marine Kiln where I would eventually join the graduate programme and then climb the ranks to become a Cyber Underwriter. In my interaction with the London insurance market,
I experienced firsthand the challenges and obstacles that many minorities face in their careers ranging from a lack of confidence, some stereotyping, and indeed serious barriers being placed in front of minority and ethnic advancement. Determined to tackle the problem head-on, I connected with someone who felt similarly, Godwin Sosi, and founded the African-Caribbean Insurance Network, a network aimed at boosting black and minority ethnic representation in the insurance industry.
With the support of Lloyd’s and TMK, ACIN grew quickly and ultimately, I left my role as an underwriter and fully dedicated myself to the African-Caribbean Insurance Network. After leading two successful funding rounds and assembling a remarkable team and board, we have transformed ACIN to Equity, with the ambition of becoming the leading diversity recruiter in the insurance sector and the City.
I undertook a degree in economics & finance as well as my chartered Insurance exams before advancing from an underwriting assistant to a full-time underwriter at Sompo International within their Directors & Officers team. One of the things that concerned me as an Ethnic Minority in the market, was a recognition that despite the talent of so many people from ethnic or minority backgrounds, people in insurance all looked very similar. The London Insurance market hadn’t appeared to make the progress made by other sectors. I met Junior Garba, co-founder, and we both shared the vision of making the sector more representative of society. I truly believe what we have created, first through the African-Caribbean Insurance Network, and now at Equity is transformative.
Equity is important because we are helping to move the dial and address how the insurance industry tackles D&I. We help to create opportunities for people coming from an ethnic minority background and work hard with partners to ensure that they are creating an environment and culture of inclusion to make them stay in the industry.
I left my role as an underwriter and fully dedicated myself to the African-Caribbean Insurance Network to help us with our dedication of mentoring young individuals from underrepresented groups, sharing our experiences, and providing guidance. Many of our mentees have found their way to into the City, where they have thrived and achieved remarkable success. That’s the Equity difference.
Paul is Chairman of Seventeen Group and has been involved since its formation in 1982.
Employing 400 staff and embracing Insurance Broking, Risk Management and Underwriting, Seventeen Group is one of the top five wholly privately owned insurance groups in the UK.
He has a keen interest in Enterprise and enjoys the satisfaction of connecting people for the wider good. He helps foster new talent by mentoring and investing in start-ups and early-stage businesses. These are varied and have encompassed Health & Safety, Specialist Tea, Motor Trade, Property, Smart Mobile Tech and now Education and Recruitment.
Paul is also aproud Life Patron of the Springboard Charity and Ambassador for The Hurlingham Foundation and ABTA Lifelife.