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    Willis’ FINEX National Strengthens VEAGIS Scheme for UK Property Experts

    Broker Boosts its Professional Indemnity Capability with new Offering From Well-Known Brand

    London, UK, December 22, 2010 – FINEX National, which handles financial, professional and management liability insurance for clients of Willis Group Holdings (NYSE: WSH), the global insurance broker, today announced that it has launched a new offering under its VEAGIS brand, a professional indemnity (PI) insurance policy for UK property professionals, including valuers, estate agents, auctioneers and surveyors.

    The announcement follows this month’s news that FINEX National was named “Broking Team of the Year” at the Insurance Day London Market Awards for its achievements in various initiatives, including VEAGIS.

    The enhancement of the VEAGIS brand, with new wording and benefits, comes at a time when property professionals can struggle to find insurance cover to protect both their company and individual assets against growing legal liability arising from failure to exercise reasonable care in the performance of their services.

    “The economic downturn has increased corporate insolvencies and mortgage defaults against a backdrop of falling property values and contractual disputes, as property owners try to recoup lost profits,” Howard Phillips, a FINEX National executive who leads the VEAGIS team explains. “With rising overvaluation claims against surveyors in particular, insurers are reluctant to provide cover for property professionals and have pushed up rates accordingly.”

    VEAGIS was originally set up in 1978 as a joint venture between Willis and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). The scheme, now wholly-owned by Willis, is fully approved by RICS and recognised by a number of other professional bodies within the industry.

    Offering one of the most comprehensive covers on the market, Willis has come together with Aviva to operate an exclusive facility underwritten by the UK’s largest insurer, which gives the broker authority to quote and confirm cover on their behalf without referral for practices with income of up to £750,000 and no Survey & Valuation exposure.

    Aviva’s Neil Gunn, Regional Underwriting Manager, Professional Indemnity Underwriting, said, “Aviva are delighted to be supporting Willis, one of our largest intermediary partnerships, with PI cover for property professionals. We look forward to developing further the already well-established VEAGIS brand with the Willis FINEX National team."

    Benefits of the exclusive VEAGIS scheme now include:

      • Instant quotes
      • Competitive pricing
      • Fast-track renewal process
      • Full civil liability cover
      • Direct claims service
      • Free legal advice helpline

    Commenting on how VEAGIS can help property experts find the right cover in a challenging environment, Phillips said, “By teaming up with Aviva, we have created a PI-in-a-box solution under the trusted, quality brand name of VEAGIS which, after 30 years, is still responsive to the changing needs of UK property professionals.”

    To find out more about VEAGIS, please contact Howard Phillips on 01473 223 273 or howard.phillips@willis.com.

    Willis Group Holdings plc is a leading global insurance broker. Through its subsidiaries, Willis develops and delivers professional insurance, reinsurance, risk management, financial and human resource consulting and actuarial services to corporations, public entities and institutions around the world. Willis has more than 400 offices in nearly 120 countries, with a global team of approximately 17,000 employees serving clients in virtually every part of the world. Additional information on Willis may be found at www.willis.com.

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