A fast-growing venture between an insurer and support provider is creating up to 10 new roles this year at its North East office.
UK Warranty, the Chester-le-Street-based initiative between insurer UK General and domestic appliance service and support provider Pacifica Group has just appointed Nicola Sumner and Jon Negri to its board.
The move comes after UK Warranty and online retailer Buy It Direct launched ‘For Life’, a pay-as-you-go warranty product, sold online and in store. Unlike traditional warranties, customers are not tied in and can pay monthly installments for a product. It is thought the deal could deliver £15m retail income.
Neil Martin who replaced John Neill as MD at UK Warranty in April last year, said the UK Warranty market is worth nearly £600m annually. He now hopes the firm can double its turnover over the course of 2014.
He said: “UK Warranty has already made significant progress in its chosen markets, such as securing the warranty business with the Buy it Direct Group, offering a ‘pay-as-you-go’ warranty option for customers purchasing white goods or TVs.”
He added: “Consumers have become more demanding of their brown and white goods suppliers, including the level of after-sales care.
“We are continuing to develop innovative ways of meeting those demands with affordable products backed by excellent service delivery.
“Nicola and Jon will be great assets to the UK Warranty board at a time when the company is growing fast and continuing to attract well-known consumer brands as clients.
Negri, who has taken the role of sales director was previously head of business development and was instrumental in attracting large accounts including leading domestic appliance company, Haier, and online retail business Buy it Direct.
He previously worked at emergency home repairs firm, HomeServe, and Dixons where he was trading manager for Curry’s warranty product in the UK.
Sumner leads the claims, actuarial and insurer relations team at UK General, and has experience in executive roles in the insurance sector, including managing director of UK General’s Irish insurance firm.
Pacifica Group has 400 engineers, sales and support staff. The business, which offers repairs, spares warehousing and product replacement, has grown to become a major supplier to the domestic appliance industry in the UK and Europe.
UK General, meanwhile, offers both personal and commercial insurance.