US insurer Chubb picks Paris as post-Brexit base

It is unclear whether the decision will require UK staff to relocate

Chubb’s chief executive and chairman Evan G Greenberg said that France was “a clear choice” for the firm.

Chubb’s chief executive and chairman Evan G Greenberg said that France was “a clear choice” for the firm.

 

US insurer Chubb has chosen Paris to host its post-Brexit EU headquarters in another blow to Britain’s financial services industry.

It is unclear whether the decision will require UK staff to relocate, and a spokeswoman for the insurer said no decision had yet been made on what the contingency plans would entail for its workforce. The company did not confirm the size of the insurer’s UK operations but said its European workforce totalled around 3,600 staff.

Chubb’s chief executive and chairman Evan G Greenberg said that France was “a clear choice” for the firm.

“Paris is the principal office for our continental European operations and we have a significant investment there in both financial and human resources, as well as a large portfolio of commercial and consumer insurance business throughout France.

“Our many years of experience in the French market and working closely with the French regulators gives us great confidence in making this decision and reinforces our commitment to our staff, clients and distribution partners in both France and across the Continent,” he added.

Plans

Chubb is the latest financial services firm to reveal plans for its post-Brexit headquarters, though most have turned to rival financial centres including Frankfurt and Dublin.

Barclays, Legal & General and Bank of America have recently revealed plans to base EU-focused operations in Dublin after Brexit, while Luxembourg has gained commitments from the likes of US giant AIG, Northern Trust and insurers RSA and Hiscox. JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs are set to bolster operations in various EU cities including Frankfurt, and Citigroup has notified bankers of plans to bolster its German office, creating 150 jobs.

HSBC is one of a handful of firms that have revealed plans to turn to Paris, having said that 1,000 jobs may move to the French capital over the next two years depending on the outcome of Brexit negotiations.

Location

Chubb’s executive vice president and general counsel Joseph Wayland said the French government — headed by business friendly president Emmanuel Macron — helped assure the insurer that Paris was the right location for its EU headquarters.

“We have been encouraged by the assistance and cooperation provided by the French government as we have considered our post-Brexit options and we look forward to working closely with the French authorities as we move forward on this project. “We are confident that locating our EU base in Paris will ensure that

Chubb is well positioned to serve its clients whatever the ultimate terms of the UK’s exit from the European Union.”

- PA