Ardonagh Retail hires ex Morrisons Supermarkets executive as new Chairman


The Ardonagh Group, has announced the appointment of Andy Higginson as Chairman of Ardonagh Retail, its online consumer business which caters for 3 million customers in the UK and Ireland. Andy’s appointment is subject to regulatory approval.

Ardonagh Retail trades under a number of leading brands including Swinton, Carole Nash and Autonet. It employs 2,400 colleagues at 11 sites and places c.£1 billion of premium income.

Andy was Chairman of Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc from January 2015 until October 2021. He worked with the executive team and Board on a turnaround of the business, culminating in its recent £7 billion sale to Clayton, Dubilier & Rice.

Prior to Wm Morrison, Andy was Chairman of Poundland up to and including its 2014 stock market floatation.

He is currently Senior Independent Director at Flutter plc, Chairman of Evergreen Garden Care (UK) Limited and YourParkingSpace, and a Non-Executive Director of Majid Al Futtaim Retail (Dubai).

Andy’s retail career includes 15 years as an Executive Director of Tesco, with four as CEO of its Retail Services Division including, Tesco Bank and customer data science division Dunnhumby.

As Ardonagh Retail Chairman, Andy will work with Ardonagh Retail CEO Ian Donaldson, Atlanta CEO Emma Rawlinson* and Chief Commercial Officer Craig Ball to support the growth of UK personal lines broker Atlanta and other strategic opportunities.

Atlanta was created from the acquisition and digital integration of van specialist Autonet, motorbike broker Carole Nash and Swinton Insurance. Its trading brands have expanded to include Lloyd Latchford, Marmalade, Healthy Pets, Be Wiser and Paymentshield.

Andy Higginson said: “The Ardonagh Group has successfully developed a number of complementary but independent divisions and I am particularly excited by the opportunities presented by Ardonagh Retail.”

Ian Donaldson, Chief Executive Officer of Ardonagh Retail, said: “There are few individuals with such deep experience in growing customer-centric, high volume and high-profile businesses as Andy. I have long-admired the ability of retailers to adapt, move fast, and serve their customers in the way they want to be served and I’m personally thrilled to welcome Andy’s valuable perspective, guidance and challenge to the table.”

Andy Higginson added: “Getting to know Ian and the team I have been impressed by the businesses’ development from product specialisms and distribution nous to the successful turnaround of Swinton from declining high street sales to digital growth.”

“The pandemic has brought customer experience, brand and trust to the fore and the forthcoming changes in general insurance pricing regulation will accelerate that trend further still. I’m delighted to be joining a great leadership team and a strong business with proud roots in the North West and global momentum behind it.”

Chairman of The Ardonagh Group, John Tiner added, “The Ardonagh Retail platform is a significant business with a strong track record, ambitious growth plans and a high calibre leadership team, which Andy is ideally suited to chair. His relevant experience in the strategic evolution of customer centric businesses together with his background in chairing major retail groups brings valued additional knowledge. We welcome his appointment as part of the broader Group, deepening our bench strength across our highly diversified range of insurance[1]related services in the UK, Ireland and broader international markets.”

“I would like to thank Feilim Mackle for his excellent Chairmanship over the past three years and we are delighted that he will both remain on the Retail platform board as well as taking a pivotal role across our 4 platforms and specifically within our Advisory platform.”