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Broker Bodies Fail To Merge

In an historic vote at their joint conference last week, and after two years of merger talks, members of the two industry associations representing insurance brokers in New Zealand failed to get enough votes to join forces and become one body.

Newly re-elected President of the Corporation of Insurance Brokers of New Zealand (CIBNZ), Richard Russell, says it is a great shame that a new single body will not now be formed.

"While our members recognised the benefits of having one industry body to represent our views and opinions to the Government, the public and other stakeholders and voted in favour of forming a single body, the Independent Insurance Brokers Association (IIBA) did not get the required numbers. They needed to get 75 percent of their members voting in favour to form a new single representative body, and this did not happen."

The CIBNZ represents 80 member firms employing some 700 people, and members of the CIBNZ handle about 75 percent of insurance business administered by brokers. The IIBA represents around 180 members, employing some 500 people and has traditionally represented the smaller broking houses.

Richard Russell says that while the CIBNZ is disappointed at the outcome of the vote, it will only serve to make his organisation work harder at their representative role.

"Our objective is still to have one pre-eminent industry association, and the CIBNZ will be working hard to fill that role and attract new members. We will continue to provide education and ongoing training for members to guarantee professional industry standards. We will also conduct a thorough review of our strategic objectives."

Richard Russell says brokers are working in a fast changing market, and as intermediaries in the Internet age, they have to add value for clients and have highly professional standards.

ENDS

For further information, please contact: Catherine Beard Principal, Comsar Communications, Tel (04) 389 0544, Mob (021) 633 212 Richard Russell, President, CIBNZ Tel (03) 218 3988 Mob (025) 226 9636


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