The Hartford, a US-based insurance and investment company, has opened a new credit and political risk insurance (CPRI) unit in London, appointing James Wilson to head up the business for the UK and Europe.

Wilson moves from insurance company Chubb where he held a senior underwriter position.

In this new role, he is responsible for the development of the firm’s CPRI offering and will support the wider CPRI team, led by Jared Kotler, to further expand the unit, as well as working with The Hartford’s European clients.

On his appointment he tells GTR: “With the amount of CPRI business in London, the idea was to get someone based here, further grow the business in Europe and be closer to our European clients. I’m bringing my knowledge from working in the London market for the last 10 years to The Hartford.

“No one was previously working in London, so that was part of the attraction to the role, starting up the business here. At the moment, I’m focused on the set up, making sure systems speak to each other and ensuring that we have a global message,” he adds.

There are currently no other hires to the London unit, but Wilson says there are plans to grow the team in the future.

He adds: “The fundamental to start with is to get the business set up correctly, allowing us to scale over the medium-term. We don’t want to come into the market and try to do all things for all people on day one. We have got to understand our clients’ needs and grow it in the medium-term in a stable and sustainable way.”

The Hartford ventured into the credit and political risk insurance market in December 2018, when it released two new products: a credit insurance policy designed for financial institutions engaged in trade and export finance, and a political risk insurance policy aimed at corporates and private equity firms with global operations.

“Expanding our product capabilities to include credit and political risk insurance helps The Hartford better meet the holistic needs of its customers operating globally,” Kotler said at the time. “These customised insurance solutions can help ensure that our clients have the appropriate insurance policies in place to adequately protect their business interests around the world.”